Over the course of this summer, while being home for the first time in two years, I’ve had more time than ever before to simply be by myself. Being the introvert that I am, I am insanely blessed by this season of peace and growth in my life. Sometimes solitude has the ability to grow us, shape us, and help us learn more about ourselves than we could ever possibly imagine. All of the alone time I have been granted has also allowed me to spend much needed time in the word, in prayer, and in pursuing Jesus’ heart. College is exhausting in more ways than one, and coming out of this year I found the only strength I had left was in Jesus. This summer I’ve been learning a lot about what it looks like to develop a firm foundation in Christ and even more about the power of prayer.
Prayer is seriously unlike any other opportunity God gives us. It is a personal conversation with an all-powerful, all-knowing, life-changing, creator of the universe that listens to each word that leaves our lips. There is infinite value and growth that can happen in our prayer lives. But sometimes, I think this can often be the area of faith where believers struggle the most. It’s so easy to get distracted in our prayer time, caught up in our busy schedules, or even just stuck in a routine of only meal graces, ritual prayers, and only praying for our “laundry list needs”. Sometimes we even stop praying because we don’t fully trust that God is going to answer that prayer the way we want and we get impatient. If any of this describes your prayer life please believe me in saying that you are not the only one.
Prayer is a process. It’s purpose is to build up a personal relationship with God and learn his heart not just to lay all our requests at his feet. If we did that with our earthly friends we would be perceived as very needy friends, and because none of us have the same capacity for love as Jesus, those would be very tiring friendships. We come to God because we genuinely need him and are thirsty for his presence in our lives not because we need something from him. Additionally, prayer was never meant to be scheduled into certain time slotted events in our days but rather as a continual conversation with God in everything we do. For this reason, 1 Thessalonians 5: 17 says, “pray continually”.
One thing I’ve found that has greatly strengthened and challenged me in my prayer time lately has been getting in the practice of persistently praying bold prayers. When we pray big bold prayers we allow God to reveal his power to us in big ways. When we persistently pray for someone or something we’re passionate about, we are able to put God’s timing and divine plan above everything else. The bolder and crazier the prayer, the more we have the opportunity to trust and lean on God. This week, I challenge you to go deeper in your prayer life by praying for something or someone boldly and persistently. Whether that is a family member/ friend/ coworker that needs God in their life, or a new door to be opened, whatever it is be specific and bold in your prayers. Then be patient and trusting in God’s timing allowing his will to be done in your life.
Romans 12: 2 says,
“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
My hope for each of you as you grow in your personal relationships with Jesus is that you discover the power of prayer in your life. Put away every thought and distraction and focus on Jesus alone in your prayer time. Through prayer, we are able to develop such a deeper relationship with Jesus and continually grow when we persistently pray.
“Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” -1 Thessalonians 5: 16-18