As soon as Pastor Schmidt read that verse I felt conviction. God has been dealing with me on this subject for several months. I do not spend nearly enough time in prayer every day. Prayer is much harder for me then spending time in God's word. When I am reading the Bible, I feel a sense of (for lack of a better word) accomplishment when I have finished. But in prayer, I share my burdens & requests with the Lord & then I have to wait. I hate waiting. I want things to be fixed immediately. I like to have a part in helping with a problem, I don't like leaving things up to others. So to ask God to take care of something & then wait on the Lord's timing is very difficult for me. Isn't it crazy that I, as a financially broke, worn out college student, would try to fix a problem before I take it to almighty God & ask for His help? Yeah, it is very crazy! Ephesians 3:20 tells us that God is able to do far more abundantly than all we ask or think. And John 11:22 says "But even now I know that whatever you ask from God, God will give you.” So, I want to challenge you to join me as I purpose to spend more time in prayer every day & to trust God more!
And can I challenge you with one more thing? Pray for others! I know that we all have so many issues in our own lives. Stressful situations, & other things that we worry about. But everyone around you has just as many things going on. I don't think any of us realize the difficult situations that go on in the lives of others.
God has really been burdening me about this recently & I think that every one of us can spend more time in prayer for these people especially:
- Our church leaders
- Our Missionaries
I don't think that any of us stateside believers can even imagine the kind of trials that missionaries face every day. Not only do they devote their lives to reaching others with the gospel, but they are often thousands of miles away from their family & friends. I know how much I miss my family & my home church when I am at college, but missionaries spend years away from their loved ones. They face challenges day after day on the field, whether it is government opposition to their ministry, or a strained budget. Medical care is usually not up to par & groceries are expensive. Add that to all of your 'normal' challenges that are part of the ministry. They counsel many new believers & they are in charge of all of the church activities & services. Missionaries need our prayers! Pray that they would have strength to accomplish everyday tasks. Pray for their safety as many of them minister in dangerous areas of the world. Pray for encouragement as they spend years away from their family & friends. Pray for provision, especially as the American economy is struggling, many missionaries are losing financial support. Pray for grace as they face many trials. Pray for compassion as they witness to others. Pray for wisdom as they counsel with many new believers & struggling Christians.