The Power of God's Word in Your Prayer Life
Prayer. It's the foundation of a Christian mom's life. Why? Because as moms, we are one of the most influential people in our children's lives. (The other, equally influential person is their father, of course.) For good or bad, what we say and do to our children affects their self-esteem, their choice of a future spouse, their occupation, and their positive (or negative) outlook on life.
As we pray over our children's lives, we can change their future. We can pronounce blessings on them, bring good relationships into their lives, and help them cope with growing up.
Methods of Prayer
There are quite a few different approaches to prayer that I've experienced in my life.
Before I became a believer, I didn't even know you could talk to God. I didn't know you could actually speak to God like He was your friend. I thought everything had to be in formal speech or "official" prayers recited at church. In fact, when I first started seeking God, I prayed the only prayer I knew: the Lord's Prayer. I prayed it over and over again. I don't know what I thought would happen by repeating it so much but it did give me a little bit of peace.
After I became a believer, I learned that God wanted me to "be real" with Him and talk to Him like I would talk to a flesh and blood person. Better than that, a friend! I learned to pray according to the acrostic ACTS:
This was helpful in giving me some type of form to my prayers. It helped me to remember that I was to praise God first, then confess my sins and receive forgiveness. Thanksgiving was my opportunity to give thanks for all He has done in my life and finally, supplication was the time I spent bringing my needs before Him and interceding on behalf of others.
For many years, I enjoyed wonderful fellowship with God as I prayed this way. Many times He showed me new things about myself?things that needed to change. He also gave me new revelation about His Word.
But after a few years, just as in anything else that becomes routine, my prayer life began to dry up. I felt like it was a duty?I didn't feel my prayers were being answered and I didn't realize the presence of God as strongly as I used to in my prayer closet.
I believe that whenever we experience this kind of "dryness" in our spiritual lives, God is calling us to a higher level. It is up to us to press in; don't become discouraged.
After much pursuit, God finally showed me that I needed to begin to pray His Word back to Him. I had heard about this before and even practiced it before in my prayer life but I didn't understand what I was doing. In the past, I had prayed His Word as a "formula", not really knowing the truth about what I was saying. It was not powered by the spirit; it was only being fed by the flesh.
Pray the Word!
But in my pursuit of Him, His Spirit "enlightened the eyes of my heart" about this issue. He showed me through the Word (and the words of other pastors and teachers like my own pastor. Also, Charles Capps, Creflo Dollar and Joyce Meyer) that He spoke the Words of creation before anything even existed in the world. He spoke light into darkness. He spoke water and land and animals where there was nothing before. God showed me that I needed to do that over my own life. Where I was impatient, I needed to speak patience. Where I was unmerciful, I needed to speak mercy. Where my children needed help, I had to speak their future over them?a fruitful spiritual life, a life that glorifies God, a loving spouse for them. All of these things are our promises in God.
A Real-Life Application
I love to be in the presence of the Lord. But sometimes, I just am not there. I live on this earth and frequently I am distracted by the problems of this world and cannot enter into His presence easily. This is a source of frustration for me and I want to be able to be with Him all the time and not struggle.
So?in my prayer time, I speak this ?out loud?over my life:
"Lord, I dwell in your sanctuary and live on your holy hill because my walk is blameless through Jesus Christ. I speak the truth from my heart. I have no slander on my tongue. I do my neighbor no wrong and I cast no slur on my fellowman. I despise a vile man but honor those who fear the Lord.
I keep my oath even when it hurts. I lend my money without usury (interest) and I do not accept a bribe against the innocent. SinceI do these things, I will never be shaken."
Notice the present tense? "I speak?I have?I do?I keep?I lend?I do not?" I am speaking things that in some case, may "be not"?but I "speak them as though they are" !
This prayer is based on Psalm 15. As I read through the Psalms one day, it penetrated my heart...this is what I wanted inmy life. Even though some of it may not be manifested just yet, I am getting there. It encourages me and builds my faith to know that someday I will walk in those promises!
Here are some more scriptures I can suggest to you that will help you bring specific changes into your life:
Do you want to?
- be filled with God's love? Ephesians 3:17-21
- protected from harm and vindicated? Isaiah 54:16-17
- be blessed? 1 Chronicles 4:10 (The Prayer of Jabez)
- believe?and not doubt God? Psalm 28:6-9, Psalm 34:8-10, Isaiah 55:11-13
Before you start praying these scriptures over yourself, really study them and meditate on them. Rewrite them and personalize them for yourself. Remember that all the promises that are in the Bible are ours ONLY through Jesus Christ. He died and rose again so that we could, IN FAITH, believe and declare these things over our lives. It is not a formula?it is truth, it is reality? once you get it in your heart.
Pray for your children and husband by putting their names in the prayer along with yours. Deuteronomy 28:1-14, Deuteronomy 30:19-20 and Psalm 112 are an example of the Word as applied to our families to be blessed and to prosper.
By the way, I still pray the "ACTS" way only sometimes it's "TCSA" or "CATS"?I still include it all but sometimes the order is different?it is done according to however the Spirit leads. That is what it is ALL about!
Eunice Coughlin is a Christian wife and mother of two daughters and the founder of www.healthy-living-for-moms.com">http://www.healthy-living-for-moms.com