Lesson 3 - PRAY: UP, IN, OUT
Ben shares from 20 years of learning to pray EARNESTLY and EFFECTIVELY
PRAY: UP, IN, OUT
“But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.” (Heb. 11:6)
Believe: You believe God when you pray, read, and text the Word of God, which is abiding in Christ, so that Christ is formed in you. Most of all, you must grow in believing God; that He is and He is a Rewarder of those that diligently seek Him (Heb. 11:6); He is the ultimate Reward (Gen. 15:1).
Unbelief: Heb. 3:12 teaches that you must guard against unbelief. You guard against unbelief by growing in belief in God through the Word and Spirit; praying, “Lord increase my faith/belief” (Lu. 17:5). Your belief in God is increased as you exercise your heart in the Word and Spirit, while embracing godly painful challenges, allowing Christ to be formed in you.
He is / He is a Rewarder: (Heb. 11:6) You must grow in the Knowledge of God and belief that He is God, while you know that He will reward your diligent search for Him. God wants to give you the reward of a heart that is alive and vibrantly in love with Him, allowing you to do works of righteousness. In the same way, you must diligently seek Him; you have to do your part—talk to Him.
Believe: Passages of scripture that focus on promises to believe in God’s Word declare truths such as God loves, forgives, leads, protects, and provides for us.
Obey: Passages of scripture that focus on exhortations to obey God’s Word command us to walk in purity, bridle our speech, serve others, and the giving of our time and money to God.
Minister to God: You should bless, hallow, glory, honor, and worship God; All Heaven declares to God who He is; you can minister the truth, about Him, back to Him. Also, God enjoys when you bless His name (Ps. 72:19). David spent time meditating on the knowledge and Beauty of God (Ps. 27:4) then ministering to God, while setting up the house of prayer to minister songs to God (1 Chron. 6:31-32; 16:37). All the songs in the book of Revelation are prayed/sung “UP” to God.
Pray: UP, IN, OUT
UP: (BELIEVE) What does this verse show me about who You (God) are? You grow in belief as you diligently seek the knowledge of God and then you declare the truth about Him, (i.e. who He is). Your ministry to God will allow God to increase in your heart and in the atmosphere around your city. HE is enthroned in the praise of His people (Ps. 22:3). Also, He enjoys your devotion; you move His heart. When you minister to Him, He rewards your heart with more of Him. Help me believe and give me revelation: (ex. You are Holy, Holy, Holy…Lord God Almighty; Thank You, Holy God; help me to believe You are holy, give me revelation of your holiness).
IN: (BELIEVE) What does this verse show me about what You (God) think about me? You grow in belief as you minister back to God, what He thinks about you. You must seek the truth about what God thinks and feels for you and then speak that truth into your heart so that you can grow in God, and become more like Christ. When you minister to God, He speaks tenderly back to you and touches your heart, filling your emotions with His truth. Help me believe: (ex. You are Holy, and You love me so much, You made a way for me to be Holy just like you; Thank You, Father, for making me Holy; give me revelation of Your desire to make me holy like You. Help me Obey: I will obey Your call for holiness; give me strength to obey Your call unto holiness).
OUT: How then shall I pray for my neighbor? Jesus, help my neighbor believe and obey You. This is where you write down a summary prayer for those around you. Old Testament Prophets taught the people and then wrote down their prayers for others to declare. David ministered to God, prayed for Himself, and asked God for the people around Him (Psalms). Paul taught the people and wrote down the prayers that needed to be heard (Eph. 1:17-19).