Over the last week or so I have been bombarded with the ideas of prayer and discipleship. These themes have carried over into my personal reading, Sunday’s sermons (all three of them), our Friday night Youth Group training (getting ready to start this coming Friday) and conversations.
I was blessed with such encouragement from God’s Word this past weekend that helped excite my heart for the Lord and after today kept me from being discouraged. During our Sunday School hour we started a series by Paul David Tripp called “Your Walk with God is a Community Project”. The main truth that was so great and so profound and yet such a “duh” moment was this: “If we do not apply the Gospel to the here and now of life we will always shop horizontally for things we were only meant to get vertically.” Our acceptance, our hope, our provision, our love can only be sought from the Lord to fulfill us in our lives. This is to help us realize that we don’t need anything from anyone but Christ alone. This idea doesn’t push us away from people, but destroys the fear of man and helps us to pursue others no matter what they may say, think or do to us.
This fit in great with our Sunday night service of fulfilling our calling to make disciples of others. It is Christ’s calling in the New Testament, but was God’s design and plan from creation. His heart towards us has always been that we would be looking to help others become like Christ. In the Garden of Eden He made us in the image of God, we marred that image, but it was restored through salvation and sanctification in Christ.
Lastly, what helps all of this to happen. What gives me the strength and ability to do this is prayer. Our church has just started a 4 week series on prayer focusing specifically on the Lord’s Prayer. Sunday morning’s focus was on the beginning of the prayer “Our Father”. He is our Father and I can confidently ask His help for the above things and so much more. Knowing that He is a real God who is all mine. Not to do my biding but to fellowship with Him, asking Him to give me the grace to do His will.
I needed these truths. People let you down, we have a calling in our lives, and God is there through all of it. May I remember to come to Him often and in His will. I leave you with two incredible quotes from yesterday,
“We all need to confess our sin, but some of us need to confess our prayers.” (Pastor David Scudder)
“Prayer means speaking to God, forgetting ourselves, and realizing His presence.” (D. Martyn Lloyd Jones)