Monday, January 09, 2012

Guidelines for Participating in Prayer Meetings

Corporate prayer is an expression of Christian fellowship. Therefore, it should be our goal that our prayer meetings promote our unity in Christ. Here are ten practical guidelines that will help us honor the Lord Jesus in our times of prayer together.

1.     Recognize the appointed leader of the prayer meeting. Look to this person to give direction.

2.     Use prayers that bless, are biblical, and brief (The 3 B’s).

A.   Bless: Are others up or torn down? (1 Co. 14:26)

B.    Biblical: Does my prayer align itself with the word of God? (John 15:7)

C.   Brief: Am I respectful of others who also want to pray? (Matt. 6:7)

3.     Direct prayers Godward. Avoid prayers that teach, counsel, or give information to others in the group.

4.     Seek God’s perspective. Ask God to address the relevant heart issues (Prov. 4:23) that go beyond practical matters of finances, health, relationships, etc.

5.     Be sensitive to others who are present. What may be appropriate in your own personal prayer time may not be appropriate when you are praying with others.

6.     Agree in prayer. Bring your thoughts in captivity. Don’t let your mind wander. Instead of thinking about what you are going to pray next, listen to the one praying. Giving a sincere word of agreement such as “amen” can stir faith in the one praying.

7.     Model faith-filled prayers. Pray with an attitude of expectation that God will answer. Focus on God’s faithfulness and ability rather than the problem.

8.     Pray with thanksgiving. Don’t just give God a to-do list. Thank him for his faithful promises, for the privilege of prayer that we enjoy through Jesus Christ, and for the fact that God knows and cares about all of our needs and desires.

9.     Speak up when leading out in prayer. This enables others to come into spiritual agreement with you.

10.  Assume that all person matters of prayer are confidential. To share even with a close friend or spouse could violate the trust of another person. If you want to share a request outside the prayer group, ask the person who requested prayer for permission.