Importance of Prayer
Prayer is powerful and you need to remember, the words uttered in prayer have wonder-working power. Ephesians 6:12 says, "For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms." Do not underestimate the power of prayer. The Devil is constantly trying to discourage us, demoralize us and weaken our faith in God. When tempted to fall into sin, pray. Prayer gives us the power to overcome. Pray gives us the strength and the faith to finish the race marked before us in this life.
Why are parents so worried about the company their children are in? It's because they know the company you are in, can influence you. The influence may be positive or negative, but there sure is an influence. The more time you spend with God, the more your face will shine with the radiance of God. The more your nature will resemble the loving nature of God. Our habits and lifestyles change. We no longer live selfish lives, but love others with a pure and sincere heart. Prayer changes us from the inside, which soon gets reflected on the outside.
It is important to pray for God's protection on your family everyday. Pray for your parents, spouse, children every single day. Moreover, as parents, the responsibility lies with us to make kids aware of the importance of prayer. For children are extremely vulnerable and the choices they make during their growing up years will shape their future. Pray for God's protection upon their young lives.
Another important aspect of prayer is intercession. Intercession is standing in the gap and praying for others in need. Pray fervently for those around you. There is a lot of heartache in this world, scores of people are suffering from the bondage of sin. Pray in the name of Jesus, that these captives will be set free. Pray for breakthroughs in their lives.
Jesus healed the sick while He was on Earth. He also gave authority to His disciples to heal. Jesus Christ has also given each one of us who believes in Him, the authority to heal. James 5: 14-16, talks about how the prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective. Pray for emotional, spiritual and physical healing for yourself and for those around you.
Importance of Praise
Praise to God is what we offer in acknowledgement of God's excellent being. You might think that praise is the same as saying "thank you," but there is a difference. Thanksgiving describes our attitude toward what God has done, while praise is offered for who God is. Psalm 18:3 says "I call to the LORD, who is worthy of praise…"
All believers are commanded to praise God! In fact, Isaiah 43:21 explains that praise is one reason we were created, "This people I have formed for Myself; they shall declare My praise." Hebrews 13:15 confirms this: "Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise - the fruit of lips that confess his name."
Praise originates in a heart full of love toward God. Deuteronomy 6:5 says, "Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength." Are you a Christian today? If so, you know that you love God because He first loved you! Without God's love, any praise you can offer is hollow. Love, born from a relationship with God through Jesus Christ, is an essential part of your praise.
Your praise to God is evidenced through your salvation. 1 Peter 2:9 says, "But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light."
How can you bring praise to God? What can you do to make it an integral part of your life? Praise can be expressed in song, in verse, or in prayer and it is to be done continuously! Psalm 34:1 instructs, "I will extol the LORD at all times; his praise will always be on my lips." Psalm 71:6 says, "From birth I have relied on you; you brought me forth from my mother's womb. I will ever praise you."
Praise to God is expressed outwardly through our everyday actions, as well as inwardly in our thoughts. Praise is an act of Christian worship.
Praise to God can be offered anywhere! In time, it will become as normal as taking a breath. Sometimes we praise God inwardly as in Psalm 9:2, "I will be glad and rejoice in you; I will sing praise to your name, O Most High." Other times we have opportunity to give glory and praise to our God publicly. Psalm 22:22 says, "I will declare your name to my brothers; in the congregation I will praise you." Search out opportunities to bring praise to God!
At Living Hope, we believe in the importance of prayer. Prayer is a communication with our Heavenly Father that is as essential as breathing. It is not only bringing our concerns and requests, but it is bringing our thankfulness, praise and worship, and being open to what God is speaking back to us in our times of prayer. So we'd like to encourage you to not only include prayer concerns (so they can be prayed for as a body of believers), but also praise items so we can rejoice in the answers and the blessings we receive from our loving Heavenly Father; So let's also bring praise for that new job...that pay raise...that answered prayer...whatever. We want to hear about it!!! If you find yourself needing prayer, send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org. God does indeed answer prayer, and please feel free to use this email address to let us know how He answered yours! It is always encouraging to hear the things God does for each of us...especially in answer to prayer! If you know anyone who needs to be encouraged, please invite them to join this mailing list! Perhaps this could be used as a witnessing tool??? There is no power greater than the One who answers prayer; "He who began a good work in you is faithful to complete it", and "My Word does not return void!!"
Join us for prayer on Wednesday nights at 7PM at the Ministry Center on Main Street.