FOR DISCUSSION IN SMALL GROUPS
How did it go last week practicing simplicity? What did you learn?
- What does your prayer life currently look like? What do you like about your prayer life and where would you want to grow?
Read Matthew 6:8-15
Jesus gives a new perspective on how to address God: as our Father. When we go to our Heavenly Father it is extremely common to bring with us certain preconceptions from our physical father. For instance - if our physical father is/was very controlling, then we might come with a unnoticed preconception that our heavenly father is also very controlling. This can deeply affect our prayer life and our whole relationship with God.
- As you think about your relationship with your physical father, can you think of any preconceptions you brought with you into your relationship with your Heavenly Father?
- How has this affected your prayer life?
Intercessory prayer is where we pray to God on behalf of others. When we view God as a loving Father that hears us and wants to “give good gifts to those who ask Him,” (Matt 7:11) we can approach Him with confidence. We truly have power to move the Hand that moves hearts.
Read 1 Timothy 2:1-5
Paul calls the church to “first of all” offer prayers up (including intercessory prayers) to God. This is interesting because over the next several chapters Paul goes into detailed instructions of other aspects of church life - qualifications of elders, taking care of widows, being generous, standing strong against false doctrine, etc. Before he goes into all that, He urges that “first of all” to offer up prayers.
- Why do you think Paul puts the main priority on prayer before the other aspects of church life?
- Could the same thing be said about your priority on prayer? What can we learn from Paul’s heart?
Read Luke 22:31-32 & 1 Thess 3:9-10
Intercessory prayer was a regular routine for Jesus and Paul. Why? They truly believed that God heard them and it made an impact. Praying for one another isn’t just something church people say or do to make each other feel better. It unlocks power from God.
- Who do you regularly pray for? Is there anyone else that you would like that to include?
Practice for the Week:
- Take time to develop who you want to pray for and how often? How will you stay updated on what you need to pray for them for?
- Have a prayer time to pray through the members of your family group with another person in your family group.