Ben Reaoch | Category: The Christian Life
Are you in a rut with your prayers? It’s easy for this to happen. We find ourselves saying the same things to God over and over again. There are besetting sins and the trials of life which we pray about. We pray for family members and friends. And often the things to pray for seem almost identical from day to day.
It has been very helpful to me to use Scripture as a launching pad for my prayers. On my own, I am very limited in creativity and thoughtfulness and memory and insights. But the Word is brimming with expressions that can prompt my praise and confession and thanksgiving and petitions. Especially the Psalms are helpful in this way, for they express the full range of human emotion.
Here is a bit of what I prayed through today in Psalm 4.
Verse 1, “Answer me when I call, O God of my righteousness! You have given me relief when I was in distress. Be gracious to me and hear my prayer!” God, I need You. Please help me. I am crying out to You. I thank You for helping me, saving me, giving me relief when I was in distress. Please hear these prayers for myself, for my family, church, neighbors, friends . . . Please watch over my wife in her pregnancy and labor and delivery, and bless our little baby boy.
Verse 4, “Be angry, and do not sin.” God, please help me to have a righteous anger toward the things that anger You. And help me not to be angry at things that are merely competing with my selfish desires.
Verse 7, “You have put more joy in my heart than they have when their grain and wine abound.” I praise You, God, for giving me gladness in life. I could have all the riches and comforts of the world, but without You I would be miserable.
Verse 8, “In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.” Thank You for giving me peace. Help me not to be anxious, but to rest in You. Thank You for the work that Jesus Christ has done on my behalf, so that I do not have to work for my salvation but can rest in Him. As we enter a season of having a new baby, please give my wife and me sleep.
In personal prayer times, in small groups, and in larger corporate prayer gatherings, I can see the benefits of using Scripture as a springboard for our communication with God.
If you’d like to explore this idea further, see Don Whitney’s teaching outline:
There’s a link to the handout at this page.
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