You know that time at the end of Bible study when the leader opens it up to prayer requests, that time when you hope people share something meaningful and personal, something that does not end with you feeling like you are creating a wish list on Amazon that you expect God to fulfill? Maybe it is just me that has that moment of dread just before people start sharing, that moment where I hope that I don't get pulled into someone's gossip session about their annoying in laws or asking God for things that don't make sense to me. Yes, I am a prayer request judger it appears. I don't want to be. I want to be supportive. I want to lift people up in prayer and see God working through the prayers of His people. But what so often starts out as a pure moment of coming before the Lord, can often get really uncomfortable when you find yourself in a room, in prayer, and God is nowhere to be found.
I struggle with prayer. Earlier this year, I decided that I needed to take some time to really study and experiment with this whole prayer thing. I could no longer sort of sit on the sidelines of something that God clearly asks of us. So I enrolled in God's school of prayer. It has a great teacher to student ratio. 1 teacher (God): 1 student (me). He has lead me to some great resources through people I respect. He has opened my eyes to passages in my one year Bible reading that I have previously overlooked. He has shown up because I showed up in His classroom. I still have a long way to go before I would consider myself even an average student in the class. But I have learned a lot. A lot that I will be processing over the next month as I prepare to teach two lessons on prayer for the women's Bible study at my church. A lot I will be writing about and then posting once I have finished teaching (don't want my local friends to be bored during Bible study).
With everything I have read and everything I have learned, I have decided that I need to stop avoiding the prayer request. There is power in prayer. I don't know how but God tells us to pray. Jesus set the example. He prayed for God's will to be done (Matthew 6:10), he prayed for himself as he faced trials (Luke 22:42 - 44), he prayed for his followers to remain faithful (Luke 22:32).
So with that in mind, as an experiment, a part of my learning about prayer, I am asking you to pray for me as I prepare this study. The topic I am trying to share is way bigger than I can handle. Well in truth, life is more than I can handle well on my own. I need God's help. And so I ask for your prayers. Prayers for wisdom. Prayers for time to study, meditate, pray and prepare. Prayers for truth to be revealed and hearts touched and challenged. Prayers that through it all, God would be glorified. Prayers for things I don't even know I need, my favorite prayers of all. The ones that ask God to work His will in ways we cannot imagine to ask.