Daniel gave us an example of the discipline of time when it was recorded that, “he knelt down on his knees three times that day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as was his custom (Dan. 6:10).” Daniel set an appointment with God and kept it faithfully. Whether your appointment with God is early in the morning or late at night, you must set an appointed time and with spiritual discipline remain faithful to that appointed time.
Another discipline needed in personal prayer is the discipline of place. Jesus not only had a favorite time for private prayer (early in the morning), but was always able, even in the midst of His travels, to find “a solitary place” (Mk. 1:35) for prayer. Jesus actively sought the solitary place for prayer. In the busiest seasons of His life, Jesus would rob Himself of sleep and needed rest in order that He might have the quiet and unhurried place for prayer.
Father, Daniel was faithful with his time and met with you regularly! He never failed to give thanks even when he was in the midst of difficult circumstances. Often I excuse my lack of meeting with You because of a change of location or because I need more sleep rather than seeking out time and space to seek Your face. Forgive me Lord, and make me so hungry and thirsty for Your continual presence that I will do whatever it takes to meet with You as faithfully as Daniel and Your own precious Son.
–Adapted from Giving Ourselves to Prayer: An Acts 6:4 Primer for Ministry (Chapter 25, Disciplines of Personal Prayer by Dan R. Crawford). This book is available at prayershop.org. Use the code CONPSP3 at checkout to receive an additional 10% discount.
Praise God that he cares about this world. Thank Christ that he calls the church “his” and that he has promised to build it (Mt. 16:18). Confess your own failures in using your time, talents, and tithe as God desires. Commit yourself to being an energetic, ability-using, enthusiastic part of the body in which Christ has placed you. Ask that, as a part of the church, you will live the fact that you belong to all the others (Rom. 12:5).
Ask God that your congregation will tirelessly live out the love that it has been given in Jesus Christ. Pray that the character and depth of this love will cause non-Christians in your community to want it for themselves.