Today, Thursday, May 7th, 2020 is National Day of Prayer and we certainly have a lot to be praying about. Of course we should be praying to God every day, but I am thankful that America sets aside days calling for national prayer. This was a pattern we can see in the Old Testament for sure, so while I recognize that we need to be praying every day, I am still encouraging all of us to set aside time (however much you can) today to pray from our homes. If you are reading this later, you can still do this! I want to share this acronym that a friend shared with me once:
I know there are many other acronyms which remind us of things to cover in prayer to God but I'd like to take a minute to break this one down.
Adoration: Spend time praising God for His goodness and telling Him you love Him and why you love Him! Focus on the truths about God that we know about Him from His word. If you want, you can read Psalm 33 and /or Psalm 34 aloud to God as a confession of His goodness.
Confession: We all sin. It's simply the truth about us. It is good to spend time confessing our sins to God and asking His help in resisting temptations. As David says in Psalm 51, when we sin it is first and foremost against God. As in any relationship, when we fail to ask for forgiveness for the wrongs we have done, the relationship is impacted negatively. Confessing our sins to God is a way that we stay in right relationship with God. And we can claim the beautiful promise in 1 John 1:9 "When we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."
Thanksgiving: This one is pretty straightforward, but I have to share that when I spend time thanking God... even if it is just a couple of minutes, it is amazing how my attitude towards life changes and I am reminded of my appreciation for God and all that He has done for us. A mentor of mine once shared this challenge with me, "What would you be left with if you had only what you thanked God for today?"
What would you be left with if you had only what you thanked God for today?
Supplications: A sort of fancy word for bringing our requests to God. The Oxford dictionary defines it this way, "The action of asking or begging for something earnestly or humbly." We are to bring requests before God for ourselves, for our families, for our church family, for our nation, for our community... The list goes on and on. Be sure to take some time to kneel before God today and humbly bring your requests to Him.
As a final note, it is important that our prayer times include quiet time to listen to God and hear from Him. Prayer is communicating with God and and good communication requires speaking and listening.
As you pray, remember what Philippians 4:6-7 says, "do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."