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"Giving Your Full Attention to Prayer"
by Tom Goodman
December 7, 2006

Most of us would agree that prayer is an essential component of church leadership.  But most of us would admit that prayer is our least-practiced activity.

There’s no escaping the biblical expectation to be leaders who pray.  In Acts 6, the Apostles laid out the job description for pastoral staff:  “We will give ourselves to prayer and the ministry of the Word.”  In Philippians 4, Paul wrote about Epaphras, the Philippian pastor, who was “always wrestling in prayer” on behalf of his people.

So, how can we give full attention to prayer?  Here’s the start to an article on that subject.  If it piques your interest, click on the link at the end to continue reading.


“Fully Present for Prayer”
by Trevor Lee

As a child I had the privilege of spending a month on the farm with my grandparents each summer.  I learned to drive a tractor, feed chickens, and herd cattle, but the most important lesson I learned came before dinner each evening.  As we assembled around the table, I dreaded the pre-meal prayer.  My grandpa sat at the head of the table and once everyone was seated he bowed his head and began to pray.  When my grandpa prayed you knew you were going to be there for a while.  He launched into what seemed like a one-hour prayer before every meal, and I would sit at the other end of the big kitchen table thinking, I want mashed potatoes.

All that changed one day shortly before my grandpa's death.  He began to pray as he had so many times before, but this time I wasn't thinking about the potatoes, I was focusing on his prayer.  He prayed for his family as though our well being depended on his prayer.  He prayed for the kingdom of God like it was the most important thing in the world.  And as he prayed he began to weep.  It wasn't the first time he had cried while he was praying, and in the past I always thought it was a little strange.  I don't know if it was the maturity that comes with being twelve or the Holy Spirit making me pay attention, but this time it I was moved—I wanted to start crying too.  I understood that he was weeping because he cared about his petitions with a depth I couldn't fully fathom.  His prayer was passionate and meaningful.  His mind and his heart were fully engaged as he cried out to his Father.

Prayer should be a moving experience.  It is the created entering the presence of the Creator.  The image-bearers uniting with the One whose image they bear.  The broken feeling the touch of the Healer.  Entering the presence of the God who defies our explanation and cannot be contained should never be a boring experience.  Yet it often leaves us uninspired.  Why?

. . . .

Click here to read the full article.

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