Prayer

Posted by Jim Murphy on Tuesday, October 28, 2014 @ 12:44 PM

This lesson begins Cadence, a six-week course designed to help students find stability in the midst of the chaos of life. Spiritual disciplines provide stability and bring maturity to our spiritual lives. This first lesson focuses on the discipline of prayer. While prayer tends to be a semi-regular part of most Christians’ lives, many students miss its great importance and don’t have much understanding of what exactly they’re to do when they pray. By examining Jesus’ teaching on prayer, they will not only discover how to pray but will ultimately find hope in the fact that when they do, not only is God listening, but He is answering as well.

TENSION

REALITY: The chaos of life keeps us from praying regularly.
TRUTH: God is faithful to answer our prayers.

TEXT

Luke 11:1–13

TEACHING

  1. Pray Eagerly – The disciples eagerly wanted for Jesus to teach them how to pray. They witnessed His prayer life firsthand and saw how mightily the Father was working through Him. They desired this same kind of relationship for their own lives. In Jesus’ response to the disciples’ request, He revealed to them that they could approach God with an eagerness and intimacy that was unknown up to that point. God wanted to hear from them and converse with them. They were not accustomed to that kind of praying. However, the prayers of a Christ- follower weren’t meant to be selfish or shallow. Rather, Jesus demonstrated that they should be first and foremost focused on the Father to whom they were praying and what He desired for each of them.
  2. Pray Boldly – As part of His teaching on how to pray, Jesus told His disciples a parable. This story might have been a bit difficult for them to fully understand. They could have wondered if Jesus was telling them that if they bothered God enough with their requests, then He would answer them. Of course, this was not what Jesus was teaching at all. Rather, He was making the point that if a neighbor could be convinced in the middle of the night to help out a friend who was making a request of him or her, then God would be much more willing to help His children since He doesn’t require any convincing at all.
  3. Pray Confidently - Jesus promised His disciples that not only did they have the opportunity to talk to God and not only would He listen, but He would always respond too. If they asked, then they would receive. If they sought, then they would find. If they “knocked . . . the door would be opened.” The picture was of coming through the opened door to intimately fellowship with God. And when God responded to them, even if it wasn’t to their exact expectations, it would be the best answer that they could receive.

SMALL GROUP QUESTIONS

  1. How does addressing God as “Father” affect the way that you talk to Him?
  2. How does thinking about prayer as a way to communicate with God change how important you think prayer is in the life of a believer?
  3. What have been your expectations for God’s response when you have prayed in the past? How have those expectations changed in light of today’s lesson?
  4. Why do you think it is so important that God gives us His Holy Spirit when we ask?

CONVERSATIONS AT HOME

Parents, pray with your kids. Pray for your kids. Pray with them regularly (bed time and meal time are the best times). Pray with them spontaneously (about a problem, a relationship, a decision, etc.). Even teens need prayer time with their parents. Ask your kids how you can be praying for them. Ask your teen to pray for you. Model and encourage prayer in your own home and family.

The content of this post is based on curriculum provided by Student Life Bible Study.

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Note

These posts are from the weekly lessons at Wednesday night FUEL. They are designed to share with you an outline of the content of our discussions, the small group questions, and ideas for conversations at home. Feel free to use these for your own conversations or lessons.

Jim Murphy

Jim Murphy, Associate Pastor, NextGen MinistriesAssociate Pastor NextGen Ministries

218-751-3699 ext 14 jim@bemidjicovenant.com

 

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