The Power of a Prayerful Lifestyle
Making Prayer a Priority
As a good, committed Christian, if someone were to ask me, “Do you pray?” the answer would be, “Of course I do! Absolutely.” I understand that prayer is my way to communicate with God. In prayer, I have the opportunity to tell Jesus my concerns and fears, while also receiving His peace. I have the opportunity in prayer to hear His voice and direction for my life—if I take time to listen. But even though my answer would be yes when asked if I pray, I don’t know that I could answer yes to the question, “Is your lifestyle one of prayer?” Here’s why:
Often, we make prayer a box to be checked on our “Christian To-Do List.” We go about life just checking off the things we know we are supposed to do because we are followers of Jesus. If our schedules are too busy, sometimes we won’t check the box and figure we can do it tomorrow.
We make prayer a part of the agenda of our lives instead of consuming our lives with a lifestyle of prayer.
In 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NIV), Paul is giving his final instruction to the church in Thessalonica and he says, “Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” Paul instructed the church to rejoice, to give thanks, and to pray continually because it is the will of Christ! In the original language, “continually” had the understanding that this was prayer that was never interrupted. This was prayer at every moment of every day, because as they prayed continually, God could show His goodness to them and they could rejoice always. They could give thanks in all circumstances, because they were praying consistently, without interruption, and believed God would answer. Prayer for the Thessalonica church was a lifestyle. It wasn’t a box that they checked each day. It was something they did continuously, throughout every moment of the day, uninterrupted.
As we begin to practice prayer as a lifestyle, we will see how it benefits our relationship with the Lord in many ways.
First, a lifestyle of prayer opens our hearts to the leading of God’s Spirit and voice in our lives. We don’t have to handle life’s difficulties in our own human understanding. God’s wisdom and guidance can be given to us when our lives are focused on asking Him first for help.
Second, whether we are faced with difficult decisions throughout our day or just asking God for extra patience with our kids, God is faithful to hear our prayers and answer us.
Luke 11:9 (NIV) states, “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” Our confidence in Christ is built up as we see Him answering the prayers that we are asking throughout our day. Our trust in His faithfulness grows as we ask and find Him in all areas of our lives.
Third, a lifestyle of prayer sets an environment in your home of total reliance on God. As we live a life of prayer, we set an example to our families, our children, and our church that God is the center of everything we do. We declare what Moses declared to the Lord in Exodus 33:15 (NIV), “If your Presence does not go with us, do not send us up from here.” Everywhere we go and everything we do is done in the power and presence of God when we live a life of prayer.
Living a lifestyle of prayer means that no decision, big or small, is made without asking the Father for His guidance. Living a lifestyle of prayer means we are praying for the salvation of every man, woman, and child we encounter during our day. Living a lifestyle of prayer means we are putting God first in all things, because we have only His purposes on our mind as we live our lives to glorify HIS name.
Make prayer a lifestyle, not a box on your to-do list, and watch as God blesses your life and your children’s ministry!