This, then, is how you should pray: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. . . . And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.” —Matthew 6:9–10, 13
Another angel, who had a golden censer, came and stood at the altar. He was given much incense to offer, with the prayers of all the saints, on the golden altar before the throne. The smoke of the incense, together with the prayers of the saints, went up before God from the angel’s hand. Then the angel took the censer, filled it with fire from the altar, and hurled it on the earth; and there came peals of thunder, rumblings, flashes of lightning and an earthquake. —Revelation 8:3–5
One of the most exciting discoveries that I ever made about prayer was that, when we are praying for ourselves [petition], if our hearts are right with God and we ask in accord with His will, God will give us what we ask (1 John 5:14–15). In an effort to personally claim that promise and receive God’s riches, I made a list of seventy-five spiritual qualities and blessings mentioned in scripture—things I could be sure were “in accord with God’s will.” I understood these to be God’s purposes in my life. I asked God for these things several times each week. What I found was that God, true to His word, heard and answered these prayers. Little by little these qualities and graces became more and more real in my life. God was answering because I was praying for what he wanted. I was praying kingdom prayers.
When we intercede in faith for things that God purposes to do, we can pray with absolute assurance that He hears and answers these prayers. They may not always be answered according to our expectations or on our timetables, but they will surely be answered. Our prayers contribute to what God is doing—building His kingdom.
–Adapted from Praying God’s Heart (Prayers that Make a Difference) by Alvin VanderGriend. Click on title for more information about this resource.
Lord God, it awes me that You hear and answer my prayers when they are aligned with the purposes of Your kingdom. Show me how to have a lifestyle of prayer that touches peoples and nations for Your glory. Thank You for the complete assurance that when I intercede as You desire, You will build Your kingdom upon my prayers. May I faithfully learn how to be the answer to the prayers You bring from my spirit so that my life becomes a praise to Your Name!
Praise God for the depth of his love, which is the very core of his being (1 Jn. 4:8-9). Thank God that he will never take his love from you or your family (Ps. 103:17). Confess any times during the last week when you gave little thought to God’s great love for you. Commit yourself to beginning each day with the refreshment of God’s love (Ps. 90:14). Ask that you “may have power . . . to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge” (Eph. 3:17-19).
Pray for specific places in the world where violence, greed, and hatred are wounding many lives. Pray that this work of Satan will be defeated, overpowered by the love of God shown through Jesus and his church.
–Prayer Points taken from Patterns for Prayer by Alvin VanderGriend (Click on title for more information about this resource).