2 Thessalonians 1:11-12
With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may count you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may fulfill every good purpose of yours and every act prompted by your faith. We pray this so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.
How much joy do you get out of praying for others? I enjoy reading Paul's writings because you can sense his joy in praying for fellow believers. He yearns for them to grow in Christ and to walk faithfully.
Prayer takes a lot of time, doesn't it? Often in the morning we have just a few minutes to read through a devotional or small segment of Scripture, but we don't have time to pray for everything we'd like. We do a "fly-by" prayer of those things that are immediately on our hearts/minds.
I have kept a prayer notebook for several years now and each January I pull out the previous year's prayers/answers and reorganize the notebook for the coming year. I keep all the answered prayer requests in a section in the back of the notebook. Like the Israelites who picked up stones along the way to remember what God had done for them, I, too, can remember how the Lord has included me in His work.
"...included me in His work" is exactly what prayer is. Through prayer the Lord allows us to see where/how He is working. It's exciting to be a part of the process! The more answers I receive, the more faith I have in God's control and care. I can see that He cares about the BIG things and the small things. I can see He guides and directs, often setting in place the answer before it's even been requested.
I want to challenge you in 2013 to make prayer a greater priority. If you have regular prayer time, find ways to increase it. Or find ways to encourage others to pray. Better yet, include other family members in praying with you. If prayer time is a challenge, then spend 5 purposeful minutes a day and ask the Lord to give you the desire to have regular prayer time. Ask Him to show you where He is working and how you can partner with Him through prayer. I promise that the return on this investment will always be great!