Over the past few weeks, I’ve given tips and shared my thoughts on how to pray more effective prayers, such as checking your motives, keeping a journal, and praying according to scripture. But there’s more to effective prayer than just doing things. It also requires that we be present. Get quiet. Open our hearts and ears. And most of all, that we pray without ceasing.
This week we will discuss how to Abide. Or, how to include the Lord into your daily activities, decisions, and triumphs.
What does it mean to abide? According to the dictionary, it means to remain stable or fixed in a state. To continue in a place.
Biblically, it means to trust in the Lord and believe that he is always with us and wishes to speak to us. It’s a belief that our life is entwined with His spirit and we, like a vine, will flourish and produce much fruit if we are grafted into Him as our source.
Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing. John 15:4-5 (NIV)
This is an intentional decision we make as children of God. That in all we do, we will seek Him, we will listen and obey, we will not act of our own accord for our own gain, but rather seek first His Kingdom in all our actions and decisions. We realize that we are part of something greater than ourselves. This is where true living begins. This is what makes our prayers truly effective because of how we conduct our lives and because of the condition of our hearts.
1 Corinthians 10:31 says, “So whether you eat and drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”
If we want to lead intentional lives and pray effective prayers, we must understand how much God values us and other people. We are not an island that stands alone. We are one small part of a greater society that God is eager to draw back to him.
The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. 2 Peter 3:9 NIV
If we want to see good changes in our world, it starts with us. Not government changes, new laws, or bickering on Facebook, trying to make our point. It starts in our hearts. It starts with truly abiding with our Creator God who loves us and wants what’s best for us. It starts with us living in such a way that the world can’t help but take notice and ask why we seem different.
Change starts in our hearts.
I still encourage you to set aside a special time of prayer and study each and every day. But today, I want to encourage you to take things a step further and abide in Him, every hour, every minute.
In the comments, share what abiding looks like to you. I’m also curious to know how real prayer is for you? Is it something you actively seek, or something you wish you had more time for?
Lastly, if you have something you would like prayer for, and feel comfortable leaving a comment about, please do. I will add you to my list of people I pray for.
Until next week, be blessed!
Jackie Castle is an author, artist and dreamer. She lives in Texas with her husband, two grown children and her dog, Banjo. She looks for the extraordinary in the ordinary in everything she experiences.
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