Prayer Mentoring: Endurance

DSC_0339Save me, O God! For the waters have come up to my neck.
I sink in deep mire, where there is no foothold; I have come into deep waters, and the flood sweeps over me.
I am weary with my crying out; my throat is parched. My eyes grow dim with waiting for my God. ~Psalm 69

Waiting on God is the hardest task of the Christian. In the wait you struggle with profound emotions, the pain of the situation, and sometimes unbearable anxiety. Often times we lose sight on how to even prayer. Often this isn’t a lack of being spiritual but being mentally tired. Here is how to pray for endurance!

Search the Psalms!
Search and find a Psalm that speaks to your soul. The subtitle I give to the book of Psalms is ‘Be Real.’ The Psalms are loaded with emotion, and being real with God. We think we fail spiritually when we don’t tell God the way it is. Psalms helps us get over that and gives us the freedom to truly voice what’s on our heart. Dig in and find a Psalm.

Pray it back!
Pray the Psalm you found back to God. Make it your prayer, your Psalm, your plea. When you’re exhausted from having to endure, rest on God’s Word to guide your prayer life. This isn’t vain repetition. It’s allowing the Spirit to work through you. The Bible is our greatest resource in enduring life’s challenges.

Worship
Even in being real, the Psalms often end with praise and acknowledging who God is- even when they didn’t feel that way. Part of being real is remembering that God is God and we’re not. There are challenges we wish no one to go through, and yet through such valleys there is an aspect of God’s Glory that shines through. You don’t ever wish to go through the trial again, but you can’t help but marvel at the glimpses of God’s goodness that you see. A key to praying for endurance is worship.

You’re not alone…
Too often we think that our trials are unique to us. In some ways they are. Remember, though, that facing trials is nothing new. Trials are only new to you. The Bible is full of stories of people who’ve been there. Jesus, our great high priest, has been there too. You’re not alone.

Pray for endurance
Step 1) Find a Psalm.
Step 2) Pray it back to God.
Step 3) Make the Psalm yours.
Step 4) Worship God!
Step 5) Remember you’re not alone.

Prayer Mentoring: Praying through challenging times

Life in a fallen world means we’ll be facing hard times. Often these hard times are a means God uses to draw us to Himself.

Pray
We say prayer should be a first response not a last result. Prayer is really both. The challenge of hard times comes when all we can do is wait.

Pray Scripture
The Bible gives us many patterns for prayer. Paul particularly records prayer thoughts for our benefit. The Bible says that if we ask according to the will of God we know we have that what we ask. Praying through Scriptures is helpful in this regard.

Psalms
When going through a challenging time the best word of advice I received was to find a Psalm, grab hold of it, and pray through it regularly. So, step one- search the Psalms and find one that speaks to your situation.

Meditate
Biblical meditation is filling our mind with Scripture. It’s an act of focus on God’s Word. This is different from Eastern meditation that focuses on emptying one’s mind. Choosing a Psalm helps in filling our minds with Scripture. So, step two- read and focus on this Psalm regularly.

Journal
This can take on many forms, but one thing you want to do is to record God’s faithfulness. By choosing a Psalm it can guide you about what to write. Step three- write what Gods is doing.

The bottom line:
Prayer is key to navigating hard times. Often we don’t know what to pray as we wait for God to show up. Pick a Psalm and grab hold of it. It will guide and sustain you through challenging times.

Manic Monday: Pray

Prayer – An opportunity to share all of life with the Giver and Sustainer of the same. ©Lee Wise

A Psalm of Fearless Trust in God.
1 The LORD is my light and my salvation ; Whom shall I fear ? The LORD is the defense of my life ; Whom shall I dread ? 2 When evildoers came upon me to devour my flesh, My adversaries and my enemies, they stumbled and fell. 3 Though a host encamp against me, My heart will not fear ; Though war arise against me, In spite of this I shall be confident. 4 One thing I have asked from the LORD, that I shall seek : That I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, To behold the beauty of the LORD And to meditate in His temple. 5 For in the day of trouble He will conceal me in His tabernacle ; In the secret place of His tent He will hide me; He will lift me up on a rock. 6 And now my head will be lifted up above my enemies around me, And I will offer in His tent sacrifices with shouts of joy ; I will sing, yes, I will sing praises to the LORD. 7 Hear, O LORD, when I cry with my voice, And be gracious to me and answer me. 8 When You said, “Seek My face,” my heart said to You, “Your face, O LORD, I shall seek.” 9 Do not hide Your face from me, Do not turn Your servant away in anger ; You have been my help ; Do not abandon me nor forsake me, O God of my salvation ! 10 For my father and my mother have forsaken me, But the LORD will take me up. 11 Teach me Your way, O LORD, And lead me in a level path Because of my foes. 12 Do not deliver me over to the desire of my adversaries, For false witnesses have risen against me, And such as breathe out violence. 13 I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the LORD In the land of the living. 14 Wait for the LORD ; Be strong and let your heart take courage ; Yes, wait for the LORD. ~Psalm 27 NASB