NEW TESTAMENT PRAYERS
We are so glad you are joining us for these daily prayer posts. Over the next few weeks we are going to listen to the prayers we find in the Bible, and some of God’s most faithful saints and servants. Through their prayers, we will learn better how to pray and connect with our heavenly Father.
Each devotion will take less than ten minutes of your time.
- We will look at an insight from those who know something important about prayer.
- We will listen to the prayers of people in the Bible—people just like us. And to people who gained a deep measure of spiritual intimacy with God because they prayed.
- We will reflect, asking the same four questions each day that invites us to look and listen with intent.
- And we will pray, for it is in praying that we learn to pray. And it is in praying that the Spirit changes our hearts.
We want to encourage you to grab a journal or a notebook – something to write on as you walk through each prayer guide. Yes, it will add a few minutes to the time it takes to do the devotion, and it will also deepen your experience and shape your walk with God for years to come. This journal or notebook will be a keepsake to remind you of God’s faithfulness during this challenging season for all of us.
“If you truly want to make a difference on earth, you need power from heaven. If you want your life to matter, it’s time to pray big, bold, audacious prayers.”
– Craig Groeschel, Dangerous Prayers
Jesus’s followers, the early church described in Acts 4, were being oppressed: The religious rulers wanted nothing more to be spoken of Jesus of Nazareth, whom they had crucified. They did not want the Good News of Jesus to spread further among the people, so the religious council ordered the disciples to neither speak of nor heal anyone in Jesus’s name. They charged them not to teach at all in the name of Jesus. The religious rulers and elders had the backing and power of the government. However, Jesus’s followers had faith. They believed that whatever the Father’s hand and His plan had predestined to take place, would take place. So they prayed for boldness in the face of oppression and threats:
“And now, Lord, look upon their threats and grant to your servants to continue to speak your word with all boldness, 30 while you stretch out your hand to heal, and signs and wonders are performed through the name of your holy servant Jesus.” 31 And when they had prayed, the place in which they were gathered together was shaken, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and continued to speak the word of God with boldness.
1. Having read the Word, sit silently for a minute and give God’s Word a moment to settle within you.
2. Re-read the verses slowly and write down some thoughts that resonate with you.
3. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you reflect on some social situations you might need boldness for speaking of or defending your faith. (For example: you might write down, “The early church prays for boldness of words and action. Where might I speak or act more boldly to exemplify my faith?“) The Spirit can help you understand what God is saying to you in these moments.
4. Ask the Holy Spirit to provision you with boldness in the future so that no opportunities will be missed for the power of heaven to flow through you.
Father, thank you for your word and the history of the early church recorded by Luke in Acts. Thank you for shaking their foundations in answer to their prayer; thank you for filling them with the Holy Spirit! I thank you for the Holy Spirit who accompanies me and all believers, your beloved children. I pray for you to remind me and to provide me courage in proclaiming your good name. I pray you show me what breaks your heart and to let me notice those around me who need to know your love. Please give me the courage to speak and act wisely and boldly, to act as Christ’s hands and feet, to demonstrate your abiding love and the Good News to all those who need your love and your hope. Please let me not be meek in my faith. I need you and trust your strength and your word. Amen.
These devotionals are adapted from various sources, including The Holy Bible, The Book of Common Prayer, Fenelon: The Seeking Heart, Fellowship Bible Church Nashville, Handbook to Prayer by Kenneth Boa and others.