…in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. (Phil.4:6)
Perhaps one of our prayer meetings this week should be given over to thanksgiving. I wonder if we would struggle with that. Might we even suspect it was a waste of time? Could we sustain a whole meeting without praying anything that was not thanksgiving? The question seems odd. At one level we know that there must be plenty to give thanks for… so why do we struggle to give it voice?
Torrey again, ‘In approaching God to ask for new blessings, we should never forget to return thanks for blessings already granted’. Our giving of thanks should probably be as definite as our petition. Is our lack of gratitude in prayer a cause of powerlessness in prayer? Is our thanklessness something that grieves God? Is it something that limits His response to our prayers? Is it something that hinders our own faith? Perhaps as we reflected on answers to prayer already given, faith might grow more bold in its approach to the throne of grace.
Let them give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for mankind (Ps.107:31).
All three of today’s prayer meetings (12-12.45; 3.30-4.30 & 7.30-8.15) will be held at St John’s Church, in part to take advantage of ‘The Lord’s Prayer Project’. Rachel will be giving us a lead as we pray with an emphasis on our ministry and outreach amongst children and families. At 3.30-4.30 there will be a chance for families to pray together with a variety of child-friendly activities.
If you aren’t able to make it to the prayer meetings today, here are some thoughts to structure your own prayers around throughout the day:
- For parents as they seek to bring their children up in the training and instruction of the Lord (Eph.6:4), and for the wider Church family as we support them
- For the effectiveness of Messy Church and Family Events
- For the small army of Sunday Group leaders, who Sunday by Sunday spend time teaching the younger members of our congregation about Jesus
- For Rachel as she continues to write our Sunday Group Curriculum
- For the hundreds of children who enjoyed the Life Exhibition, and for those who this week are engaging with the Lord’s Prayer Project.
- For our relationship with local schools, and for those who are involved in those schools as Governors, staff, volunteers, leading assemblies and activities, Open the Book teams; helping out with lessons etc.
- For the Holiday Club at St. Andrew’s (9-11 Aug), and for the Epic Explorers course (CE for children) that we’ll be running in September