Friday Morning Prayer:)… November 16, 2017

November 16, 2017 - 7 minutes read
What a friend we have in Jesus,
All our sins and griefs to bear!
What a privilege to carry
Everything to God in prayer!
Oh, what peace we often forfeit,
Oh, what needless pain we bear,
All because we do not carry
Everything to God in prayer!
Have we trials and temptations?
Is there trouble anywhere?
We should never be discouraged—
Take it to the Lord in prayer.
Can we find a friend so faithful,
Who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness;
Take it to the Lord in prayer.
Are we weak and heavy-laden,
Cumbered with a load of care?
Precious Savior, still our refuge—
Take it to the Lord in prayer.
Do thy friends despise, forsake thee?
Take it to the Lord in prayer!
In His arms He’ll take and shield thee,
Thou wilt find a solace there.[1]
I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better.[2]
On any given day, I listen and talk with many folks, asking them, “How are you doing?”  A general inquiry.  Most respond with the expected, “good.”  Following the formal questions about mood, sleep, behavioral patterns, etc., I value the opportunities to ask about their spiritual journey.  There are those who ask questions and express the urging to know God, to read the Bible, and have certainty about their salvation through Jesus.   I am delighted to listen to their questions and respond with gospel truth.  I strongly encourage others and myself to pursue God.  Our gracious God gives the urging, we practice communing with God in prayer. 
Prayer is a journey!  I must learn to pray.  I have to.  Therefore, I keep practicing.  At times the journey is full of joy, and there is a sense of God.  At other times, the journey is somber, God seems distant, and I can’t sense the presence of God, paying attention in prayer for more than a few minutes is difficult.  I keep pursuing!  I have to.   The Psalms are spiritual food for the prayer journey.  Whatever our circumstances, our emotional state, feeling overwhelmed, or confident in the strength of our Lord, the real-life expressions of the Psalmist encourages us to persevere in prayer.  We learn the varied expressions toward our Mighty God and engage as the indwelling Spirit helps us to pray. 
“But you, O Lord, be not far off; O my Strength, come quickly to help me.”[3]  “To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul; in you I trust, O my God….”[4]  “One thing I ask of the Lord, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple.”[5] 
There are those moments when we struggle in prayer.  Initially, the Psalmist asked, “Why, O Lord, do you stand far off?  Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble?”   Later he proclaims, “Arise, Lord!  Lift up your hand, O God.  Do not forget the helpless….”  “But you, O God, do see trouble and grief; you consider it to take it in hand.  The victim commits himself to you; you are the helper of the fatherless.”[6]
Through the practice of prayer, we continually long to know our gracious God better.  I need the Spirit of wisdom and revelation!  So, I keep asking in prayer.  Why?  To know God better!  To experience intimacy, communion, fellowship, and enjoy God without ceasing.  I long for the eyes of my heart to be enlightened so I can know better the hope to which he has called.  The riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints!  Moreover, his incomparably great power for us who believe![7]
Our prayer journey changes us; our God molding and shaping us into the likeness of Jesus.  Moreover, that longing to know God better in prayer is never fulfilled completely in this life, it intensifies; God does become our constant refuge, our source of supernatural power, comfort, wisdom, discernment.  We pray not just our petitions, but we learn to give our “selves” to God!  Through the Spirit, we worship, adore, give thanks, confess our sins, and always bring our brokenness before the throne of grace.  
Beloved, I pray you stand amazed in the presence of Jesus the Nazarene!  May the awe of God fill your being as you journey and pursue intimacy with God in earnest prayer.   
Blessed Savior, Thou hast promised
Thou wilt all our burdens bear;
May we ever, Lord, be bringing
All to Thee in earnest prayer.
Soon in glory bright, unclouded,
There will be no need for prayer—
Rapture, praise, and endless worship
Will be our sweet portion there.
Sisters are meeting to pray.  First Baptist.  1912 Arnold Way.  Alpine. 0900.
You are invited to join gals in prayer.  If you are free for an hour, go enjoy a time of sweet fellowship! 
Brothers are meeting too!  First Baptist.  3rd Friday.  0730.
Oh, the necessity of prayer!  Not only do we need private, secret prayer before the throne of grace, it is a necessary joy to meet with brothers to pray.  You are invited! Don’t hesitate, come join for an hour.

[2] Ephesians 1:17
[3] Psalm 22:19
[4] Ibid 25:1-2
[5] Ibid. 27:4
[6] Psalm 10:12, 14
[7] Ephesians 1:17-19