This year started out with a bang – literally. In January, we had a car accident – we were only a mile from our house, but it was more than a fender bender. Our family of three was in the car, and while we weren’t injured beyond soreness and bruising, it shook us up.
While at the accident scene, I had the urge to pray with the other driver, who was about my age. I kept trying to dismiss that urge, not knowing how she’d receive it. After a few moments of saying “Are you okay?” to each other, I asked if she’d let me pray with her. We held on to each other, shaken and in tears, surrounded by our dented cars, a fire truck, an ambulance, a police car, and rush-hour traffic slowed by our incident. I thanked God that we weren’t hurt, asked that the car situations wouldn’t be a hassle, and praised Him for commanding His angels for guarding us in all our ways (Psalm 91:11).
I don’t tell you this to sound super-spiritual – I’m not. I share this because if we ignore these promptings by the Holy Spirit, as I have many times before, we’ll miss out on great fellowship with God and each other.
Choosing my Word of the Year
In December, as I was mulling over a word for 2019, I kept coming back to prayer. In my circle of friends across the globe, many were facing heartache – grief over tragic losses that didn’t make sense to us. Over Christmas, I carried around the names of 10 families who were facing their first holiday season without a loved one. I felt helpless at times, wanting to minister without knowing how.
So I prayed.
I know that in some circles, saying “I’m praying for you!” isn’t well-received by everyone. I’m not denying that our prayers should have feet on them. If possible, we need to back up our prayers with practical help or simply our presence. But dropping to our knees in a moment of need is a powerful exercise of faith in a good God. And it’s a discipline I need more of in my life.
“Talking to men for God is a great thing, but talking to God for men is greater still.”EM Bounds
- Spiritual warfare – Though we live in the physical world, there is so much happening in the spiritual realm that our eyes can’t see. I’ve been more and more convinced that I need to step up my praying game in order to fight these battles.
- Interceding for others – Does anyone else have praying grandparents? I did – and as I’m seeing the loss of these prayer warriors, I’m understanding the great need for younger generations to take on this role. I want my prayers to be consistent, persistent, and based on Scripture.
- Praying with others – Our pastor began 2019 with a challenge to our church to become a praying church. I had no idea when I choose “pray” that our church body would also focus on corporate prayer. “We are living far below our privileges in the Gospel,” Pastor Vradenburgh said concerning prayer. I’ve been encouraged and convicted to join with other believers to seek God’s face, not just His hand. You can listen to the sermon series here (A Clarion Call to Corporate Prayer).
Personally, I have been on the receiving end of earnest prayers – to preserve my life due to complications from VEDS, for God’s divine timing, and for sustaining grace. Several people at church have told me they pray daily for me and my family – I am humbled and grateful.
I’m excited to pray this year and study about prayer – to unlock the power that prayer holds when I meet with God in intercession, petition, and thanksgiving.
I’d love to hear how I can pray for you, dear reader – how can I specifically approach God’s throne with your requests? Send me an email and I will add you to my list. Let’s start 2019 off on our knees!
Need help deciding a Word of the Year? Check out these tips (scroll to the end) from my post earlier this month.
Power Through Prayer by EM Bounds – Only 4 chapters in, I’m already challenged by this author’s prolific work on prayer. He wrote nine books on the subject! In fact, I purchased the Kindle edition of his entire collection on prayer.
Praying God’s Word by Beth Moore – I read this right after college, and I look forward to dusting it off and diving back in. I love using God’s words to guide my prayers.
Scripture Necklace – A sweet friend sent me a “Pray Without Ceasing” necklace for an early birthday present; I love wearing it as a reminder of my word of the year. Jane.com has great deals – this is only $4.99 + shipping right now! – but their deals rotate, so make sure you don’t wait too long to purchase after you browse.
These are affiliate links – If you purchase through these links, I will receive a small stipend at no extra cost to you.