Culture Value #2 (Part 2)- Prayer is Prime
“When we pray, we are agreeing with the Holy Spirit of our desperate need for His presence and we are asking for His transforming power to consume and move in us personally and corporately. Ultimately we believe the purpose of prayer is to align ourselves with His will, His ways, and His Word.
So when we gather our ultimate purpose is NOT to fill empty time or transitions with empty words or phrases and call it ‘prayer’, but to invite the Holy Spirit to meet the deepest needs of those gathered for the advancement of His Kingdom and the glory of His Name.”
I believe there are foundationally two types of prayer. The first is corporate prayer that happens when we come together as the body of Christ—the Church. When we pray that God would use us as a Church to impact our community better yet the world with His gospel, His truth. When we pray that the Holy Spirit would have His way in our gatherings to convict, to comfort, and to challenge those gathered to hear from God’s Word. When we pray that our worship leaders would lead from a heart of humility and inspiration leading us to experience His presence. When we pray that God would use our pastors and teachers to speak the truth of God’s Word with accuracy and courage. When we pray that God would raise up those in our midst to share in the work of the gospel to equip children, students and adults. When we pray God would inspire our leaders to lead us with the vision He has instilled in our body to reach those who need the hope of the gospel. Corporate prayer happens in our connect groups, in our gatherings and in our prayer room where people gather to lift up the needs of the church family. Needs that include healing, power, and direction.
There is also a second foundational type of prayer and that is personal prayer. I have found that there is no spiritual growth apart from personal prayer. Praying invests in our relationship with God. It builds our faith and shows us areas of deceit in our lives—allowing us to see a more accurate picture of who we are. It should be remembered that prayer is a dialogue yet most people treat it as a declaration. Think about it is a conversation between the believer and the God of the universe. The One who knows us better than we know ourselves. The One who sees our needs before we do. The One who has a plan and a purpose for our lives. The One who knows what is best for us. Yet many of us do not practice the greatest thing available to us—the ability to speak and hear from a God who is not only all-knowing but also loves us unconditionally.
Lastly, we desire to create a culture of Bible-believing followers of Jesus Christ who believe Scripture and Prayer are their only means to live now and eternally the intended purposes of their creator. We also desire that people not fall for the cheap imitation of programmed and meaningless prayers that do not bring transformation nor cause them to encounter and experience a Savior who loves and cares for them deeply.
“Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.” (James 5:16)
“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.” (Philippians 4:6)
“Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints.” (Ephesians 6:18)