Prayer 101: How You Can Strengthen Your Prayer Life
Over the course of my life, there have been several times when I thought it might be the end.
However, when I learned to praye like Jesus taught His disciples, I discovered a new relationship with God and fellowship with Jesus as my Lord and Savior. Jesus gave us great examples on how to prayer in Matthew 6:1-13; Luke 11:1-13. Paul teaching on prayer is reflected in 1 Thessalonians 5:1-28; 2 Thessalonians 3:1-8.
The apostles studied Jesus’ lifestyle. They saw Him go off by Himself to pray at all hours of the day. And they would see Jesus come back from these prayer times with the Father invigorated, alive, refreshed, and motivated. So they asked Jesus to teach them how to pray!
Jesus gives them a model prayer in Luke 11:
“Father, hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Give us each day our daily bread. And forgive us our sins, For we ourselves also forgive everyone who is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation.”
Now, this is not the Lord’s Prayer, but a model prayer. It is an outline for prayer, a pattern for prayer. And there are six basic ingredients in this prayer that I want to share with you today.
I have formed these six factors around the acronym CHRIST.
C stands forconcentrate. The first word in the model prayer is “Father.” Almighty God says that His children are to go to Him and call Him Father. We are to concentrate on Him as God, Father, His nature, His character, His dominion, His omnipresence. That’s the first ingredient.
H stands for hallowed. “Hallowed be Your name.” The name of God is not to be used in a pedestrian or profane sense. It is to be set aside, it is unique, it is holy. It is to be separate from all other names.
R stands for ruler. “Your kingdom come.” It is His kingdom. His agenda in heaven is the same agenda He has for earth. We should not pray for God to bless our kingdom and agendas, but rather that we may be in the middle of His plan and kingdom…which is anywhere Jesus is Lord. Anywhere God’s will rules and reigns is where you will find the kingdom of God.
I stands for I need. “Give us each day our daily bread.” This is where the pattern of prayer changes. We are simply to pray for the needs of today… not tomorrow. And it’s not what we want or what we desire, but what we need.
S stands for sin. “And forgive us our sins, For we ourselves also forgive everyone who is indebted to us.” We are to ask forgiveness for our sin. This is a prayer for believers, not for unbelievers. If we forgive those who have sinned against us, we too will be forgiven.
T stands for temptation. “And lead us not into temptation.” This does not mean, “God, do not try to trick or tempt me,” but rather, “Lord, please make sure I do not get entrapped by the world. Keep me away from the wrong crowd.” Please Note: God has provided a way for us to escape temptation. "There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it." (1 Corinthians 10:13)
It’s my prayer that you will remember the word CHRIST in your prayer time this week and in the weeks to come. I hope this powerful tool will help strengthen your prayer time…and your relationship with God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior!