Original Research in Unexplored Territory
Growing up, either my mom or dad would tuck my brother and me into bed and we would “say our prayers” before bedtime. We would pray for things like peace, health, family, and friends. Sometimes we prayed for fun things like pets, birthdays, and toys! “Saying our prayers” became one of my favorite parts of our bedtime routine. This would happen almost every single night until I became old enough to do it on my own. It was because of my parents that I learned to pray on my own and that I developed a practice of prayer. It is also something that I am excited to share and instill in my daughters as they get older. I owe the prayer practices that I have now to my parents because they are the ones who taught me to pray.
In his book Celebration of Discipline, Richard Foster talks about prayer as “original research in unexplored territory” (Foster, 30). While we have many models of prayer found in scripture, especially the ones that came from Jesus found in the Gospels. Prayer isn’t a “science”. There is no magic formula or words that we need to say, especially in our private prayer. There is nothing that we say that makes some prayers “heard” and some prayers not. Personal prayer is how we connect to God. Prayer can be life-changing and life-giving. That is also because is not a one-sided conversation. Prayer is a part of sanctifying grace because the more that we pray and have these conversations with God, the more that we become like God. We begin to see things through God’s eyes and our hearts begin to reflect God’s heart. Healthy prayer life can lead to inward transformation!
This week in worship we are continuing our worship message series “Finish Strong” as we talk about being “Revealed in Prayer”. As we continue to move forward in this campaign, the main question we are asking everyone to consider is “Lord, what do you want to do through me?”. This is a question that requires prayer! It requires us to talk to God and to seek wisdom and guidance, to find that “unexplored territory”. For us to “Finish Strong” we must first start with prayer. It starts with our personal connection and communication with God, which can lead us into great things. So, let’s Finish Strong together as we continue in this campaign!
Grace and Peace,