Laundry List Prayers

Do you ever feel like your prayer life has become an endless pile of laundry lists?

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I keep a prayer journal, and I have daily “prayer points” that help focus my prayers, but I have to be careful not to let my prayer life become all about “ticking the boxes.” It’s easy to see a list of names or a topic on paper or a screen, and make prayer about what is written in my journal, or making sure I don’t “miss” someone on the list. Prayer is a conversation, and it should flow like one. I would not like to have a conversation with someone who came to me with a long list of requests and nothing else.

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That doesn’t mean we can’t bring our requests to God– we should! And sometimes it makes sense to list them out methodically and specifically. But it’s also important to remember that God already knows all the concerns of our heart. He is eager to hear from us— not just our concerns, but our other thoughts, too. He wants to hear our excitement and joy over small triumphs; our questions and ponderings; and all the little things that make us go, “hmmm.”

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When Jesus taught His disciples how to pray, He didn’t have a list of names or specific situations. He asked that “Thy will be done in earth as it is in Heaven.” (Matthew 6:10). He asked the Father to “give us this day our daily bread,”(v.11) without specifying when or how. And He asked, “Forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors,”(v.12) without naming names or reminding God of the debts involved! Sometimes we need to be reminded that that God knows our needs, our neighbors, and our universe far better than we do!

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Today, I want to put aside the “laundry list” and just spend time conversing with my Savior. I hope you will, too.

Do You Know Him?

We offer prayers to God, but sometimes, we lose touch with who He really is.  One way to freshen our prayer life and our spirits is to rehearse the names of God.  There are several throughout the Bible– too many to list them all here, though I will leave some at the end of today’s blog and links to sites that list more.

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The pursuit of prayer isn’t just about the act of praying– it is about knowing God better; getting to know who He is, and who we are in Him.  God is so much bigger than any one name or title, and the more we rehearse and remember His attributes, the more we discover Him to be beyond all that we can think or imagine.

That’s My King–Dr. S. M. Lockridge  In just over four minutes, Dr. Lockridge builds an amazing word picture of Jesus Christ– one that I have turned to often over the years.  If this pocket of a sermon doesn’t give you goosebumps, I don’t know what will.  Here’s the PDF version if you can’t get the video.

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It is also a wonderful idea to keep a running list (or start one) of your personal names for God– in fact, many of the names we use come from names given by others after a personal encounter with God.  “The God Who Sees,” “The God Who Hears.” “God My Provider,” “The God Who Heals,” and many more are scattered throughout the Bible as God revealed Himself in a personal way to various people.  There are also names and titles God has used to introduce Himself– “The God of Abraham,” “Yahweh (I AM),” “King of Kings,” “Almighty,” and many more.

God is spirit– we may feel His presence, but we do not see Him as He really is– not yet!  And when we don’t see Him, we can lose sight of His Glory and Honor and Power.  So let’s take some time today to “see” Him with new eyes– eyes of wonder and awe as we get just a bigger glimpse of Who HE Is!

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I wonder…
Do you know Him?

A 30-Day Prayer Guide for the Names of God (Navigators. org)

Q and A about the Names of God (Bibleinfo.com)

A few of the Names and Titles of God:

Yahweh/ Jehovah
Abba/Father
Adonai
Almighty
Alpha and Omega
Ancient of Days
Author and Finisher of Our Faith
Beginning and the End
Beloved
Bread of Life
Breath of Life/Breath of Heaven
Christ
Comforter
Cornerstone
Counselor
Creator
Deliverer
Divine
Dwelling Place
Elohim
El Shaddai
Eternal
Everlasting Father
Exalted
Example
Father
Fisher of Men
Foundation
Glorified
God
Good
Gracious
Guardian
Help
High Priest
Holy
Hope
I AM THAT I AM
Immanuel
Immortal
Incarnate (Jesus)
Infinite
Intercessor
Invincible
Jesus
Just Judge
Kind
King
Lamb of God (Jesus)
Law-giver
Living Water
Lord of Lords
Majestic
Maker of Heaven and Earth
Merciful
Messiah
Mighty God
Most Holy/Most High
Name Above All Names
Noble
Omnipotent (all-powerful)
Omnipresent (ever present)
Omniscient (all-knowing)
Perfect/Perfector
Prince of Peace
Promised One (Jesus)
Provider
Quick to Hear
Ransom
Redeemer
Refuge
Resurrection (and the Life)
Righteous One
Ruler
Sacrifice
Sanctuary
Savior
Shelter
Shield and Defender
Strong Tower
Teacher
Truth
Unchanging
Victory
Well-Spring
Wise
Worthy
Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow (The Same)…

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