Is prayer “missing in action” in your personal routine, family or church? I’m ashamed to admit that prayer falls to the bottom of my agenda far too often. Priorities and the tyranny of the urgent are the culprit, but there’s more to it than making easy excuses.
I’m compelled to ask myself whether or not I really believe in prayer. Do I faithfully expect that God will take my work and multiply it in the prayers I offer? Or do I have lowered expectations for the work God wants to do in and through me?
Spiritual issues and problems require supernatural solutions, and that’s where regular prayer becomes important. Prayer leads me to evaluate my priorities, decisions, motives and attitudes. It impacts my heart and mind, making me a more effective leader and servant.
Bill Hybels describes this “supernatural walk with a living, dynamic, communicating God” this way:
Authentic Christians are persons who stand apart from others, even other Christians, as though listening to a different drummer. Their character seems deeper, their ideas fresher, their spirit softer, their courage greater, their leadership stronger, their concerns wider, their compassion more genuine and their convictions more concrete.
I want that kind of power and conviction in my life, family and church. Perhaps you do too. If so, ask yourself some key questions about prayer:
- Where does prayer rate in your daily schedule?
- Does your family pray together regularly?
- Is prayer valued in your church or organization?
- How can you develop more effective prayer habits?
On that last point, let me offer a prayer model from Dr. Greg Frizzell, Prayer and Spiritual Awakening Specialist with the Oklahoma Baptist Convention. Based on The Lord’s Prayer, our most important biblical model, Dr. Frizzell’s PRISM acrostic is a powerful way to pray every day:
P = Praise
R = Repentance
I = Intercession (about spiritual things and for spiritual protection and deliverance)
S = Supplication (petition)
M = Meditation on the Word (listening for lessons in Scripture)
So what’s the Big Idea?
Make prayer part of your daily routine for greater effectiveness in every area of your life. Expand that principle to your family and church to appropriate divine power for living the everyday mission of God. Most of all, believe in the power of prayer.
- Too Busy Not to Pray by Bill Hybels
- Prayer by Timothy Keller
- “From Self-Reliance to God-Reliance” on Serve. Grow. Lead.
- “Live an Everyday Life on Mission” on Serve. Grow. Lead.
- Greg Frizzell Ministries
- The Praying Life Foundation
Bill Hybels, Too Busy Not to Pray: Slowing Down to Be with God (10th Anniversary Edition, Revised and Expanded), 2nd ed. (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1998), 125.
Greg Frizzell, PRISM Prayer Model, January 19, 2015.