Boot Camp 4

1 Thessalonians 5:17 (NLT) “Never stop praying.”

Luke 18:1 (NLT) “One day Jesus told his disciples a story to show that they should always pray and never give up.”

Prayer is the fourth item on My Top 10 List in the Boot Camp blogs. Prayer is intended to be an endless, flowing, two-way conversation with God. As with any healthy conversation, this 24/7 conversation involves both speaking and listening (more on My Top 10 List #5 Listening in the upcoming Boot Camp 5!). How is it possible to pray 24/7? Don’t we need to sleep? We do, but the Lord speaks to us even during sleep through the Holy Spirit which dwells in us. King David wrote of this in several of his prayers:

Psalm 16:7 (NLT) “I will bless the Lord who guides me; even at night my heart instructs me.” In The Passion Translation, this verse reads as “The way you counsel and correct me makes me praise you more, for your whispers in the night give me wisdom, showing me what to do next.”

Psalm 17:3 (NIV) “…when you probe my heart, and examine me at night; when you refine me…”

Jesus tells us of the importance of the indwelling Holy Spirit for receiving truth and guidance 24/7:

John 16:14 (NLT) “When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own but will tell you what he has heard. He will tell you about the future.”

The Apostle Paul instructs us about praying in the Spirit:

Ephesians 6:18 (NIV) “And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.”

Jesus and James, the half-brother of Jesus, give us insight into the power of prayer:

Mark 11:22-24 (NLT) “Then Jesus spoke to the disciples, “Have faith in God. I tell you the truth, you can say to this mountain, ‘May you be lifted up and thrown in to the sea,’ and it will happen. But you must really believe it will happen and have no doubt in your heart. I tell you, you can pray for anything, and if you believe that you’ve received it, it will be yours.””

James 5:16b (NASB) “The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much.”

If you are like me, there are times when your prayers seem to “hit a ceiling and go nowhere”. There are reasons for this, including your own sin and choosing to not forgive others. Jesus continued with his instructions to his disciples:

Mark 11:25 (NLT) “But when you are praying, first forgive anyone you are holding a grudge against, so that your Father in heaven will forgive your sins, too.”

Ask the Lord to reveal your own heart and mind to you so that you are aware of sins for which to ask His forgiveness and of people whom you need to forgive. Open up the lines of communication! The Father wants to clear up the static!

Psalm 26:2 (NLT) “Test me, O LORD, and try me; examine my heart and mind.”

Psalm 51:10, 17 (NLT) “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me… The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, You will not despise.”

Warrior, with a clean heart, renewed spirit, and transformed thinking, have an open conversation with the Father – listening and making your requests known to Him.

Philippians 4:6-7 (NLT) “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.”

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