Prayer is a central bedrock of our dynamic relationship with God. Yet all too often, prayer falls to the wayside amidst the busyness of life – often an afterthought or a last-ditch effort during rock bottom times rather than a daily, front-line initiative.
This is unfortunate because prayer offers us the exact thing we need during situations of life: the presence and perspective of God. When we pray, we are not only opening ourselves up to God but we are also sharing ourselves with God. Prayer acts as a highway between God’s heart and ours. God always moves toward us and prayer positions us to respond to God’s self-initiated conversation with us. Prayer realigns our spiritual spine, and both remind us of what is true about God, the world and ourselves as well as any of life’s specific situations.
Just like a friendship, communing with God (i.e., our prayer life) takes time and effort. While “help me” and “thank you” are two potent prayers, I’d like to provide a classic prayer structure that might function as a helpful trellis for your spiritual growth. This is by no means the only way to pray – Jesus offers us another model through His prayer – but I find specific forms useful and maybe you will as well.
The acronym for this prayer structure is ACTS which stands for:
Adoration—Praising God for his character. (Lord, I praise you for your goodness and consistency…)
Confession—Asking God for forgiveness where we have missed the mark. (Lord, I’m sorry that I…)
Thanksgiving—Thanking him for all that he has done on a personal level. (Lord, thank you for….)
Supplication—Asking God for things that are on our hearts and minds and where we need him to intercede in our own life or our community. (Lord, I intercede for…. or Lord, would you shape me into a person who….)
In thinking about the student ministry, would you join me in praying on behalf of this ministry in a few areas?
- Pray for a middle or high school student individually. The student ministry created prayer cards with pictures and information on students. If you are interested in praying for a student by name, please let me know and I’ll send you one of those cards. Many of the Holy Trinity community groups are already doing this as a group!
- Pray for the upcoming middle and high school spring retreats (Feb. 14-16 for high schoolers and Feb. 28-Mar. 1 for middle schoolers). Please pray that students would have their imaginations captured afresh by the work and presence of Jesus and that they might also form deeper bonds with those attending.
- Pray for a new student ministry director as well as the right student ministry fellow.