There are some issues in the life of faith which require more than just a request of a single believer. Daily bread for the people of the wilderness generation was given to all of the people, and not just a favored few. There are times when it is imperative to “test out” our asking for legitimate needs by sharing them with the larger faith community.
There are several advantages to this approach. The first is that this kind of asking moves us away from praying only about our personal concerns. It guarantees that we will at least attempt to discern whether our asking for the bread we need serves the kingdom agenda, or whether we are merely caught up in our own thinking. Beyond this, a second benefit is that fellowship grows out of tackling a thorny problem together with other believers. The old saying goes that “a problem shared is a problem halved.” Thirdly, a different quality of power is released when it is clear that many (rather than just one) are agreed that God must intervene. When the many intercede for the power of God to move, and a prayer is answered, the faith of the many is made strong.
Jesus Himself was clear that there is a different level of prayer when the praying moves from one person to the many: “Again I say to you, that if two of you agree on earth about anything that they may ask, it shall be done for them by My Father who is in heaven. For where two or three of you have gathered in My name, I am there in their midst” (Matthew 18:19-20, NASB).
Lord, Your people struggle to meet together to pray! I will often avoid it in favor of shutting myself inside of my prayer closet rather than drawing near to You with others. Show Your Church how Your power is released when two or more are gathered in agreement! Make us willing to overcome our hesitancy towards praying with one another in community as the believers in the early Church did daily!
–Adapted from Power Praying (Hearing Jesus’ Spirit by Praying Jesus’ Prayer) by David Chotka. This book is available at prayershop.org. Use the code CONPSP3 at checkout to receive an additional 10% discount.
Praise the Lord, who is your strength, your rock, your fortress and your deliverer (Ps. 18:1-2). Give thanks that “the weakness of God is stronger than man’s strength” (1 Cor. 1:25). Confess your desire to rely upon your own strength. Commit yourself to doing everything through him who gives you strength (Phil. 4:13). Ask God to cause you to serve him with the strength that he provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ (1 Pet. 4:11).
Ask God to remove habits which destroy and limit relationships among your family and friends, and to replace these with habits which are life-giving and Spirit-led.
Resources for Prayer Leaders:
Prayerleader.com is a website devoted to growing prayer in the local church.
The Church Prayer Leaders Network is for anyone who desires to see his or her church make prayer foundational to its entire ministry. Click the link to find out the advantages to being a member of the CPLN!
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