Click here to listen to Pastor Nate Hall’s sermon ‘Prayer’
Listen. James wants us to pray in all circumstances. He wants us to pray alone. He wants us to pray with others. He wants prayer, especially prayer with others, to become a lifestyle. James 5:13-18 encourages us to pray in each of these circumstances:
- pray when life gets hard,
- sing songs of praise to God when life is good (worship is part of the Lord’s Prayer –- “hallowed be your name”)
- call the elders to pray over us and anoint us with oil when we are sick
- pray for each other when we fail and need God’s forgiveness.
Reflection. Take some time to think about the presence of prayer in your life. Do you pray on your own? Do you offer to pray for others? Do you pray in all four circumstances that James mentions, or are there circumstances where you forget to pray or ask for prayer? If there are areas that are lacking, why is prayer in that circumstance a struggle?
Set Goals. Based on your reflection, make a specific plan to make prayer more a part of your life.
- Come up with a way to pray in each of the four circumstances that James 5:13-18 speaks of, especially those circumstances where you haven’t been praying.
- Make a plan to pray on your own; pray with others (when people ask for prayer, consider offering prayer right on the spot); and to ask for prayer when you need it.
Who will you share this lesson with?
- Listen to God. Sit silently in his presence; listen for his voice, submit yourself to his will for the day.
- Respond to God. Pray through the outline of the Lord’s Prayer: worship, surrender, daily needs, forgiveness, and protection.
- Bible Reading. Read the Bible as a disciple, listening to what God has to say, responding with obedience, repentance, worship, and trust, and sharing with others what you are learning.
- Praying for your five. Pray for five people in your life that God will work through the circumstances of their life so that they are open to follow Jesus. Pray for opportunities to invite them to follow Jesus with you.
- Prayer with others. Pray with spouse, family, and others.
- Discipling Friendships. Cultivate friendships with others for the purpose of following Jesus together.
- Community Worship. Join with fellow believers to receive the Gospel through the Word and communion and respond with worship and prayer.
- Participate in trainings that develop your gifts and deepen your walk as a disciple of Jesus.
- Give your time, money, and talent. Give what God has entrusted to you to love your neighbor, make disciples, and strengthen the church.
- Sabbath. Take a twenty-four hour break, where you cease from all paid and unpaid work. Connect with God, family, and friends. Rest. Play. Enjoy activities that recharge you.