No matter what our age, our years of Christian service or our maturity in ministry, we will always need to keep growing in the exercise and discipline of prayer. As you fulfill God's call on your life, I want to encourage you to be a person committed to powerful prayer.
The apostle Paul's prayer in Ephesians 3:14-21 comes to mind when I think of excellence in prayer. This gives several insights into the preface, posture and petitions of powerful prayer.
Paul starts by saying, "For this reason I kneel" (v. 14, NIV, emphasis mine). What reason? What is the reason that drives him to prayer? It is a phrase he also uses in Ephesians 3:1: "For this reason I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus."
In some way Paul connects the reason—the preface—to the entire prayer that follows. Paul joins that "reason" to the word mystery that occurs four times in Ephesians 3 (vv. 3, 4, 6, 9). The "mystery" is that the church—composed of Gentiles and Jews—would make known the many-sided, multifaceted wisdom of God to rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms.
In plain speech, Paul is saying, "Before I launch into my prayer, let me tell you what stands behind it. The church has God's name on it. We are the assembly of God. The church is His pride and joy."
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