There are few things as significant to a Christian as prayer, and there are few things that are so easy for a young pastor to neglect as prayer. Prayer doesn’t feel like it “does” anything. People aren’t known for prayer—it isn’t sexy and it doesn’t bring accolades.
As I started this little blog series, I wanted to focus on things that I’ve learned after about 10 years of pastoral ministry. I do this for me because it helps me to figure out how I have changed (and likely how I need to keep changing). The first post was about how faithful ministry is better than fast ministry. How does ministry remain faithful, though? Through prayer.
Phrases like “pray without ceasing” (1 Thess 5:17) or pray “on all occasions” (Eph 6:18) intimidate the best of us. How are we supposed to do that? When are we supposed to do that? I’m not sure of every way—there are many in my church who diligently pray. I lean on those people. Still, I always want to grow in how I pray and help others to pray and be prayed for.
I have found, many times, that one of my most productive hours in ministry is not Sunday morning. Those moments on Sundays are definitely where I see the most people and, by God’s grace, see the Scriptures transform people. I love Sundays. However, a small group of folks I gather with regularly on Monday mornings to pray has become one of the essential elements to my ministry rhythms. Continue reading “One of My Most Productive Hours”
You know you’ve heard it, and you know you’ve done it. You’re in that meeting where you’re asked to pray. Forget for a moment that you hate being put on the spot for prayer and consider what happens. You quiet yourself, you bow your head, you close your eyes, and then you say it.
“Lord, I just pray that . . . ”
Wait, what? You just pray? You have direct and free access to the Creator of the universe (Eph. 3:12) and you “just” pray to him? Something is off when that happens. Continue reading “Stop “Just” Praying”
If you’ve been coming to the Oaks for the past few months, you’ve noticed that we make prayer available in the back for those who desire it. This was borne out of our marriage series, where we realized that married couples may be struggling with significant issues and may want others to pray with them. A friend met up with me and shared that, at least for the series, he wanted to meet with people should they desire it.