It is wonderful today (Sunday May 7th AD 2017) to be able to launch our new weekly prayer diary for the life of our church family here at the Ascension. Dave and Helen Porteous have designed and printed it for us, so many thanks to them. Lord willing, this will be a great aid to faithful prayer by us as a church family for the various groups and activities in the weekly life of our church.
The great thing about it is that if we miss, for example, one Monday, we can pray the following Monday for the activities listed that day. Also, it is the type of booklet we can easily keep in our Bibles or on a bedside table. It is meant as a joyful aid to informed prayer, not as a guilt trip prompt!
The Apostle Paul urged the church family in 1st century Colossae: ‘Continue in prayer and watch in the same with thanksgiving’ (Colossians 4v2 – Authorised Version). It is no accident that Paul exhorted Christians to stick at praying because prayer calls for self-discipline. It requires a continual exercise of faith because we don’t physically see the God we are praying to.
But it is vital for our perseverance as faithful Christians that we continue to persist in prayer, praying for our own daily walk with the Lord Jesus Christ and that of our fellow Christians.
It is also no accident that Paul reminded Christians to give thanks to God. We pray to the God who has, in the words of Paul’s prayer of thanksgiving in Colossians 1, ‘made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints (God’s chosen people) in light: who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: in whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins’ (v12-14).
God has already done everything necessary to secure our eternal salvation in Jesus Christ, so we have so much to thank him for. It is also important as we use the new prayer diary to remember to thank our loving God for specific answers to prayer.