For the month of February we are going to practice THRIVING in prayer. As Believers, we are rooted in Jesus Christ and our way of communication with him is through prayer.
One way to THRIVE is to “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding, in all your ways acknowledge him and he will direct your path” Proverbs 3:5-6. Another way to THRIVE is found in 1 Thessalonians 5:17 where Paul encourages us “…to pray without ceasing..” in all the ups and downs of this life!
There are many ways in which we can THRIVE in prayer and I offer you four ways:
- Thriving in prayer in a quiet place – this ‘quiet’ can be difficult in our day and age, however, it does offer less distractions, and as we have conversation with God, we “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ” 2 Peter 3:18.
- Thriving in prayer outdoors – Jesus prayed in the wilderness, on a mountain and in the Garden of Gethsemane. You and I can pray in the very same places as well as a park, a river or while hiking. I challenge you to pray Psalm 19 while hiking and gazing upon the sky, or Psalm 42 while meditating near a body of water or Psalm 62 while sitting on a rock and “ finding rest for your soul in God your rock and salvation”.
- Thriving in prayer with others – Matthew 18:20 is encouraging, “for where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them”. Praying together is a time for you and me to be in community with fellow image bearers, seeing the very image of God in each other and bringing the work and power of the Holy Spirit into community. What an opportunity you and I have to practice this in our homes! If you and I don’t pray with and for each other, how will we THRIVE?
- Thriving in prayer using images – If we are new to prayer or going through a difficult time in life and cannot find the words to pray, we can use images such as a picture, a poem, some memorabilia, a sunset, or a sunrise. Romans 8:26-27: “Meanwhile, the moment we get tired in the waiting, God’s Spirit is right alongside helping us along. If we don’t know how or what to pray, it doesn’t matter. He does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of our wordless sighs, our aching groans. He knows us far better than we know ourselves, knows our pregnant condition and keeps us present before God. That’s why we can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good” (The Message).
This month of February, I challenge each one of you to pray and write down how you see yourself growing vigorously and flourishing in communication with God, yourself and others! Like a tree planted by the water, you will never run dry, living water flowing through you, you will thirst for more of God! (Paraphrased THRIVE by Casting Crowns).