This was prayer week at our church. I miss the prayer weeks gone by where we would gather for a “Concert of Prayer”. I would either play softly under the prayers, or just get to sit there and participate. At the end of the week we used to have a prayer vigil that went until just before midnight. At 11:30 we would gather to have the Lord’s Supper together…I loved it so much.
Our church has moved prayer week to the first week in January, which didn’t work out for us to really participate with our church family. There was no Concert of Prayer this week, and no vigil on Friday night :(. So most of our participation was just as a family at home.
Our Pastor suggested the book, “A Praying Life” by Paul Miller to use as a companion this week. I had started reading the book months ago, but got distracted. This week I have really tried to read it in earnest, and not get distracted. That has not been a problem. I can hardly put it down. My favorite quote in the book so far has been this one: “If you are not praying, then you are quietly confident that time, money, and talent are all you need in life. You'll always be a little too tired, a little too busy. But if, like Jesus, you realize you can't do it on your own, then no matter how busy, no matter how tired you are, you will find the time to pray.”
I have been convicted in the past about my prayer life, and really want to embrace it this year and move it from being the “spare tire” of my life to the “steering wheel”. I want it to be what precedes ANYTHING I do in my life. Jesus never did anything without the Father, that’s why the crucifixion was so painful for Him…God had to turn His face away. I don’t want to do anything without Him either. I want to be in constant communication with Him, so I don’t go about any little thing in my day without Him being in it with me.
I have also been convicted about the time I spend in the Word. I have always wanted to read through the Bible, but the plans that are out there seemed to have an overwhelming amount of reading per day, and I have great struggles with keeping my mind focused on ANY reading…let alone tons of it. A friend of mine posted a link to a reading program through the Gospel Coalition, and it’s a 2 year read through the Bible program. I started it January 1st, and it is going well. It gives me 2 catch up days a month, but so far I have not needed them. It’s not a great deal of reading a day, so it allows me to really contemplate what I have read, and meditate on it.
I can always tell when God is IN something. In the first week of reading, I have found many verses that I’ve thought would minister to someone and I’ve either shared them on my Facebook, or with someone personally. Not only is God teaching me as I read, but He’s ministering to others through what I’m reading as well. I love that.
I’ll probably be sharing posts as the reading progresses, as well as how our lives unfold in 2012. The year is off to a good start here at PTS Academy. We are grateful to God for the many ways He has, and continues, to bless us…