Jude 20–21 (ESV): But you, beloved, building yourselves up in your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit, 21 keep yourselves in the love of God, waiting for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ that leads to eternal life.
One of the most often neglected spiritual disciplines is prayer. Not because we do not pray but because we pray as if God is a magic genie or only when we are in peril. Do not misunderstand me, we should go to God with our needs and the Psalms are full of prayers in times of peril. But that should not be the only time we are praying. Praying a thanks over your food will not prepare you for the spiritual war we have been going over the last couple of months.
If that is the case we need to take prayer more seriously. James has said we do not have because we do not ask and when we do ask we ask selfishly to use it on our passions. What is your primary motive in prayer? Is it to commune with the God who has paid the ultimate price to have a relationship with you? Or is it to pray for health, wealth and much more? Sometimes our prayers are more prosperity gospel centered, though we are not praying for millions (at least I hope not).
But prayer is important. We see Jesus many times in the Gospel secluding Himself to pray and commune with the Father. This should be the ultimate motive of prayer. We get to commune with our Heavenly Father. We get to approach the throne of God and talk to the King. Jesus said if we ask the Father anything in His name He will give it. Does that mean anything we pray for we will get? No, Jude explained we must pray in the Holy Spirit. This does not mean we enter a trance or anything crazy. It means we are submitting to the Spirit in prayer and praying the heart of God. God will answer those prayers!
So how should we pray? There are many ways you can pray. The one I am about to lay out is not necessarily the best one. I just like it because of its simplicity and outline. Feel free to research more options. Donald Whitney has some great sources on the spiritual discipline on prayer and praying the Bible. I hope the model below will help you and your family pray in a way that both glorifies God and helps your children remember the reason to pray.
A- Adoration: Begin each prayer with praise to God. One of the easiest way to do this is to base this part on something you have read in the Word. This helps your bible study and theology to formulate your prayers.
C- Confession: Next, you confess sins. You should be specific and not general.
T- Thanksgiving: Then, you thank God for all He has done for you in Christ and in this life. Thank Him for the forgiveness you find for the sins you just confessed. Thank Him for your family, your church, your job, etc.
S- Supplication: Bring any requests to God that you have. Now that you have made Him first in your prayers and now that you have thanked Him for providing, you can humbly come to Him and ask.
For Parents: How does this model differ from how you normally pray?
For Children: Teach your children this model - Pray every day with them and have them pray each day as well.
Memorize: Jude 20–21 (ESV): But you, beloved, building yourselves up in your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit, keep yourselves in the love of God, waiting for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ that leads to eternal life.
Pray: Use this model to pray with your family. Make a list of church members and attenders. Pray for a couple each time you do supplication.
Activity: Write prayer cards with your family and deliver them to church members.
A Family Devotion Guide similar to this one will be provided on our website under Fellowship Church Resources and social media every Friday for you to use at home. Then, visit our Facebook page, Friday night's at 6:00pm, to hear Pastor Armando Yzaguirre Jr. chat about this devotional.