Living life as a follower of Jesus, I wish to be a blessing to those around me. But more often than not, unless they are in and around our church and church life, I seem to have little I can practically do.
Imagine my delight – should have realised long ago – that I could bring God’s blessing on others. The secret was ...
... to remind myself of the privilege of prayer.
I know we believe prayer is important, it’s a privilege, it makes a difference, but even I feel I don’t pray enough – and I’m a vicar, for goodness sake!
So how then can I bless others, whom I long to receive blessing from God, some understanding of His love for them and of His desire to enjoy their friendship and companionship?
a) Start praying from God’s perspective – thank God for those you want to pray for, thank God that He can touch their lives for good and joy, thank God that He hears and answers our prayers for those we pray.
b) Continue praying from the perspective of Jesus’ love – remembering that Jesus was frequently recorded as being moved with compassion for the lost, the lonely, the struggling as well as for His disciples and friends, pray out of love for those you want to pray for.
c) Ensure you create a scheme that makes praying worthwhile – all too often I can make my prayers not much more than a 30 second Tweet on Twitter – instantly there and instantly forgotten. Create a scheme of prayer that gives you a positive framework: pray daily for a few people, pray weekly for a wider circle, pray waitingly for God to lay on your heart a person for that day.
d) Glean understanding for your prayers – I can pray without knowing much about a person or a situation, but informed prayers, using our minds and research, asking questions, finding out more, will help our prayers have depth and breadth. And it’s easier to know God has answered a specific prayer request rather than one so general …
And remember that prayer takes us right in to the throne room of God, and that’s wherever you are and whenever you pray. So your workplace, your home, your car, your walk, your … are all places of prayer, and places where God is interested in hearing and answering your prayers.
Go on, pray God’s blessing on those you know.