By Keith Lee
It was during one of the Confirmation sessions that I felt I was losing the class. No, it wasn’t the students, because they were and are fantastic, one of the best groups I ever taught. I sensed something about the process was not quite right. So, that week I wrote to parents earnestly and humbly asking for their help and prayers. I asked them to pray for the class during the week, on the night of and most importantly with their child to lift up Confirmation. The class on the following Sunday was markedly different. I was focused. The confirmands were attentive. The words I spoke seemed to enter into them, rather than fall flat on the floor. The parent who was the 2nd adult in class agreed that it was an exceptional session.
So why don’t I pray more? More importantly, why am I not asking (or begging for) your help to lift up the youth, children, teachers, parents and all our wonderful members with your prayers? Well, it’s time to change all of that, because I need your prayers. I need your help in praying with me to lift up these precious souls to God. One of my resolutions for 2016 is to pray, and more importantly, to ask for your prayers.
In order to encourage you to pray with me I want to share top three reasons why I pray.
- Prayer Focuses
One of the spiritual problems these days for believers is that there are more distractions out there. Smartphones, Facebook, TV shows, sports on TV, Instagram, emails, texting and these are just related to TV or internet. Praying helps me to focus and be centered. It really helps me to focus on the top priorities in my life, rather than just looking at screens all day or chat or fiddle or whatever. Prayer helps me to focus on the most important priorities that will be eternal.
- Prayer Surrenders
Prayer is, in a way, death. It’s dying to yourself because while you’re praying, you’re helpless. You cannot do anything while you’re on your knees with eyes closed, head bent and hands held together. This is a posture of surrender; an admission that you’re helpless and dependent, and more importantly, dying to yourself. When I first began to pray, I resented it because it seemed futile. But, soon, I discovered the more I surrendered the greater was God’s providence.
- Prayer Connects
The joy of prayer is getting to know Jesus. Even though it’s a mysterious process, prayers connect me to God. I can’t explain it, but I experience God’s presence in a real way. Even if I might feel like no prayer requests were met (this never happens but just to be hypothetical), just the fact that I spent that time in the presence of the eternal one gives me deep joy and satisfaction. God’s presence is all that I need.
So, I ask you to pray for Trinity and all of its ministries, leaders and members for 2016!