In the midst of all the great teaching in the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5:1 – 7:29), Jesus said: “And when you pray…” (Matthew 6:5). When Luke records the disciples asking Jesus about prayer, His response began: “When you pray…” (Luke 11:2). There is nowhere in the Bible that describes prayer as a “maybe” thing!
Prayer immerses us in our BELONGING to God and to each other. Prayer enables and equips us in the confidence we need to be GROWING into more and more of the likeness of Christ. Prayer and SERVING are fused together – being church isn’t about “social action & evangelism”, or “prayer & discipleship” – it’s both together. A church that’s thriving will have all of its BELONGING, GROWING and SERVING firmly rooted in prayer.
The early church was devoted to prayer. It wasn’t an add on to the real work of the church, but it was essential to everything. A vital hallmark of an authentic church is prayer. The essential energy for mission and ministry in our community must come from prayer, not from any and every other issue we allow ourselves to get distracted by as church. A culture of prayer is the key to a healthy and authentic church community.
Over the coming weeks we will be looking to deepen our culture of prayer so that the authenticity and healthiness of our expression of church will be strengthened, and so that we will be re-energised for the fullness of the mission and ministry that God calls us to.
Matthew 6: 5 – 13.
Prayer is one of the most important parts of our Christian faith. It’s often the time we leave others, come away and seek God for ourselves. So we’ll be looking at how we can pray with a good heart. Focusing on three really simple parts of prayer: thank you prayers, sorry prayers and please prayers. We’ll also be looking at how we can cultivate a great personal prayer life at the beginning of this series on prayer.
Thank you prayers, sorry prayers and please prayers.