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The Narrow Road Series. Get a sneak-peek into each book in the series.
There is a song written old long ago within the Psalms. Songs and prayers that still can be sung and prayed today as we step into the next year of 2021. The reality is we need to pray and bring God into this 2021. We can start with prayer.
Psalm 143 – A Psalm of David
Many of the prophets of olden days had a relationship of prayer, talking to God. They needed God’s direction in their lives. God had called each of them to His great service. Being a servant of God, brought many battles and enemies. It was not an easy life. We can see the dark place David found himself in as we read that prayer. He was in a lowly place. A place, I think many people could relate with. The manner of talking to God continues to this very day. Prayer (communication) with God, is the foundation of faith for believers, a relationship with God, the Father, and God, the Son, Christ Jesus. It is not religion.
If you read through the New Testament we again see many prayers. The Lord Jesus always prayed to the Father. Jesus left us that same example of how to pray when he told us the example of what we call the Lord’s Prayer. What a great way to make our day’s better, by taking time in prayer with God, the Creator our Lord and Savior. Prayer is a quiet time, set apart for just you and God. The time we spend with God takes us from all of our cares. Especially when we pray for other people. It is then, we can tend to forget about our troubles for a while. Sometimes, we just need to talk to someone and who better to talk to, than God. We can tell him how we are feeling. Ask him anything. The Bible tells us to bring all our prayers and petitions to the Lord.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 English Standard Version (ESV) 16 Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”
No one prayed to the Father God more than Jesus did. God the Son, and God the Father, were in constant communication. If we look all through the Bible from Old Testament through the New Testament, the constant and commonality was that everyone who knew God prayed to him. Prayer is a common vertical communication with God. King David, all throughout the Psalms gives an example of his constant prayer. Moses also prayed and so did all the prophets after him. They often prayed for Israel, and for others. In the New Testament, Paul, Peter, Timothy, and all the disciples lived a life of prayer. In many of their letters, they admonished the people to pray and pray continually. Prayer moves mountains. When people pray, God responds. There are many common denominators to prayer, for example:
Repentance – asking God to forgive our individual sins (all the bad things we do and say) while also forgiving others who sin (do hurtful things) to us.
Praying for God’s will to be done. Giving God the place He deserves, recognizing His Holiness, and reverence. Praying with Thanksgiving for everything He does, has done, and is going to do for all of us.
Ephesians 6:18 English Standard Version (ESV) “18 praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end, keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints,”
Again we are instructed to pray for others, pray for the people that live down the street or your neighbor or someone you don’t even know who is sick in the hospital. Pray for the leaders of our churches and this country. Once we get started, our Sweet Hour of Prayer may turn into 2 hours or 3 or longer.
Jesus said to come often and cast our burdens before him. If you like fishing then you know that when you cast out your fishing line, you are throwing it out into the water. If you don’t throw out your line, you are not going to catch any fish. So too, if we don’t cast our prayers out to God along with our worries and cares, he is not going to answer is he? Why? Because we are not asking Him. God also tells us that we don’t get because we don’t ask. God tells us to ask. Jesus even told the disciples how to pray. That is why many of us learned the Lord’s Prayer. It is a guide on how to pray.
Pray then like this: Our Father in heaven, hallowed (Holy, reverenced) be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our debts, as we also forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen. Mathew 6:9-13
The Bible also talks about faith. Do you know what the Bible definition of faith is?
All through our lives we have our struggles. Many times in life, we take one day at a time to get through. We pray for God to help us get through that day, to give us strength, to uplift us so we can do the things we have to do. Sometimes as we get older the tasks become more and more difficult. Our bodies tell us through our aches and pains that, We are not as young as we used to be. We see the changes in the World. I think many can testify to the changes we have seen in 2020. Many believers in the Word of God, see the decay and the falling away from those Biblical principles and teachings. People falling away from God and doing their own thing day in and day out. It is not working for most people. We do need God every hour. Precious Savior. One of my favorite songs is called “Sweet Hour of Prayer”. We often sing it at the chapel service in the seniors home. The song like a prayer but also a great reminder of the hope we have in Jesus our Savior for today and for a future and an eternity with Him when we reach those lofty heights.
Sweet hour of prayer, sweet hour of prayer, that calls me from a world of care,
And bids me at my Father’s throne make all my wants and wishes known.
In seasons of distress and grief, my soul has often found relief,
And oft escaped the temper’s snare, by thy return, sweet hour of prayer.
Sweet hour of prayer, sweet hour of prayer, thy wings shall my petition bear,
To Him who’s truth and faithfulness engage the waiting soul to bless.
And since He bids me seek His face, believe His word and trust His grace,
I’ll cast on Him my every care, and wait for thee, sweet hour of pray
Sweet hour of prayer, sweet hour of prayer, may I thy consolation share,
Till, from Mount Pisgah’s lofty height, I view my home, and take my flight.
This robe of flesh I’ll drop, and rise to seize the everlasting prize,
And shout, while passing through the air, farewell, farewell, sweet hour of prayer.
William W. Walford, a blind preacher of England, is the author of the hymn beginning “Sweet hour of prayer.” This hymn first appeared in print in the New York Observer September 13, 1845. Sweet Hour of Prayer | Hymnary.org
The last paragraph sings, when we reach the lofty heights and our days here come to a close and we take our flight, we put on the new robe of eternal life that we have been given in our Savior, Jesus. We have reached the prize. That relationship with Christ Jesus that leads us into a sweet hour of prayer, every day, and helps us reach that great destination. We say, Farewell, farewell to that sweet hour of prayer because when we go home to be with Jesus, it is no longer an hour of prayer, it is an eternity with God. Wow! Prayer deepens our relationship with God the Great I AM our Savior Jesus Christ. Do you have that relationship with Christ? Begin this New Year of 2021, in that Sweet Hour of prayer with our Savior Jesus Christ the Lord.
No Greater Love – Click here to hear my love song to Jesus.
One might do something nice for a neighbour, a friend, a family member or even a stranger. Can you imagine giving up your life for another or giving up your life for someone who hates you? There are heroes, who have done this. Jesus said, “There is no Greater Love than a man lay down his life for a friend.” (John 15:13)
We know that Jesus walked the talk and was the perfect example. He was sinless, yet, He took on the sins of the world. This song is my appreciation to Him – recognition and praise to my Saviour for doing this for me. I too am a sinner. Thank you , Father,for your perfect son, for your grace and for providing a way of atonement and redemption not only for me, but also for all who receive Your gift of love. I receive your Love and Give back to you my Lord with a heart of gratitude. You, Oh Lord, are worthy of all praise, now and for all eternity.