Wednesday, November 23, 2011

~ "Did you pack the prayer list???"

We give thanks to God always for you all, making mention of you in our prayers (1 Thes 1:2)
In all of Paul's letters, he always gave "thanks" after his salutation.  Whether he was thanking many or one, he was thankful for all who the Lord placed in his life.  He was able to rejoice at the chains that bound him in prison, he was able to be thankful for the smallest of gifts given him, he was a man whom God saw fit to change and once changed, he spent the remainder of his life praising him and giving thanks to him!  
We have so much to be thankful for.  There is not enough time in the day to thank God for all he's done for us. I know that some days I can spend a long as two hours in prayer, other days I don't get but 20 minutes.  But it's all good!  I always remember to thank him for sending my Savior!  I thank him for my family and friends.  I petition him with a "prayer list" on which are many names.  Some are in groups of names and I don't fret because God knows who they are.  There is a "sheet" with prayer requests written on it from a retreat; there are listed also in my little "white" book a multitude of names of people I have never met, have never spoke with and know only by a thumbnail sized photo.  There are family members of people I've worked with, parents of people I grew up with and leaders of this country.  You are on that prayer list!  There is also a prayer list stuck in the inside flap of that book from my church.  Names without faces, but all in need of prayer.  There are unspoken requests, there are spiritual requests, there are requests for healing and requests for salvation.  I pray for my church and my Pastor and his family.  I pray for other churches that I have attended and for that congregation.  
When someone asks me to pray for them, I do!  I don't leave the praying up to someone else because I am too busy ~ I used to do that - not anymore!  I never had time to pray for anyone other than myself!  I have found that in praying for others, thus taking my focus off of my own wants and desires, that the Lord blesses me!  I don't really need to ask him for anything for me ~ he already knows what I desire.  I've learned that to pray for someone else is a privilege!!!
Lift up your voice in prayer and in praise to the giver of so many blessings!  Acknowledge that you are a sinner and that undeserving as you are, you are thankful!  Pray for the needs of others and yours will be met!  Pray with devotion, pray with thanksgiving, pray with humility, pray with joy!  God loves to hear the song of our hearts!