I absolutely loved Chapter 3 in our book, A Woman After God's Own Heart. Prayer. It seems that in my late teens/early twenties a prayer life began to take shape in my life. As a youth leader at my church, we were required to attend prayer before service on Sunday mornings. There were times when i thought it was awesome, and times when i had no complaints. However, there were other times when i thought it was a bit too much to expect & that it shouldn't be something "required" but something we did because we wanted to. I remember a lot of the youth leaders did not come to pre-prayer & it annoyed me that they did what they wanted to do, while i showed up early nearly every Sunday morning. I know the purpose of it was that, as youth leaders, we should be praying for the youth in our church. But now i can see that time as the beginning of my prayer life. It developed it. It got me to do it more on my own.
All through my twenties, i prayed. And prayed & prayed. The pre-service prayer got it going. Then my friend Becca started coming to my house early early one morning a week & we would get on our faces & intercede for the girls at Springhouse, a home for troubled teen girls where we held weekly Bible Studies. That was the purpose of our prayer meeting, but after awhile we were praying for each other, for our families, for our friends & for the youth in our church. Soon i was rooming with Amanda & Ali, and i remember Becca & others meeting us there to pray. Sometimes it was too early & i didn't want to get up. But i was always glad i did!
This post is getting too long already, and i haven't even begun the questions for this week! All of that was just to explain that i once had an awesome prayer life. I knew how to get on my face & pray for those who were hurting. But it's been years now since i have prayed the way i used to. I whisper prayers of thanksgiving & prayers of "help!" & sometimes i may even pray a little bit longer while in the car. But i want to take some time to REALLY pray. This chapter was AWESOME & really inspired me to get back to it!
Ok, so i'll try to make the rest of this quick. HA!
1. What meant the most to you from this chapter or offered you the greatest challenge or inspired you deeply?
Make no decision without prayer & if he doesn't meet it, you didn't need it!
2. Read Mark 1:35 for a glimpse of Jesus at prayer. What can you learn about His prayer life?
He goes off to a solitary place. If it is important for Jesus do, it should be for us, too! :)
3. Blessing #1: A Deeper Relationship with God -- As you consider that prayer increases faith, provides a place to unload burdens, teaches us that God is always near, trains us not to panic, and changes lives, which one of these benefits would be the greatest reason for developing a heart committed to prayer at this stage of your life? Why?
Trains us not to panic. There are things i want & feel like i NEED NOW. But if God hasn't met it yet, then i don't need it yet. And i don't need to panic about what may or may not happen in the future. It will happen if it's His will. Let go of it. :)
4. Blessing #2: Greater Purity -- I shared with you my problem with gossip in this area of purity. Now won't you identify your particular problem area and share briefly what you plan to do about it?
Worry. Lack of Trust. & i will start giving these burdens to God & understand that He will meet it when i need it! (I really loved that, can ya tell?!)
5. Blessing #5: Contentment -- Identify an area in your life where you struggle with finding contentment. Now look at Philippians 4:10-13. What can you learn about contentment from these words from the apostle Paul? How can you apply Paul's lessons to your own situation?
We have a trailer. For awhile i hated it & i definitely didn't think in 2 years we'd still be there! Over the last year, i have gotten a lot more content with the trailer. It's cute. It's cozy. But i have two issues. #1 - i cannot stand the area we are in. And #2 - i am afraid that we are going to be there when our kids are growing up. One baby there would be fine, but I have this horrible image of me with ten kids in the living room on sleeping bags because we only have enough bedrooms for 1 (Brad says they could share a room, i beg to differ! TINY ROOM! Also, i want 2 kids, not 10.). =) I really really want a house...i just do not know when that will happen. But this verse means so much to me! So what if all my friends have nice houses?! So what if some people think we are crazy for not getting one now?! Who cares? The important thing is that we are TOGETHER & happy. :) I need to give these worries to God.
I am going to wrap this up now, mainly b/c it's so long already & i have already hit the main points for me this week. But i do want to get a prayer journal & start really keeping track of my prayers & how God answers them. I know he will answer every one of them in His way & in His time! I will definitely be helped remembering that "if he didn't meet it, i didn't need it!". :)
(Please do not comment that this is the best time for me to buy a house! I think i will scream if another person says that to me. It doesn't really matter if the interest rate is ZERO, if we can't afford the note, we can't afford a house! Kthx.) :)