“The pulse of prayer is praise. The heart of prayer is gratitude. The voice of prayer is obedience. The arm of prayer is service.” ~William A. Ward
I know I am not alone when I say that struggle in offering praise to God. I do not struggle to feel gratitude for all that God has done, nor to emotionally be engaged when I consider that the Creator wants to listen to me. But the words … they do not always come naturally.
In a recent small group meeting we made a list of some things that Peter praised God for in 1 Peter 1:3-5. If you are struggling with ‘the pulse of prayer’, then I encourage you to learn from Peter and let his inspired words inspire you.
~The Father of Jesus Christ~
God we are filled with amazement and gratitude when we consider your relationship with our Savior and Brother Jesus Christ. He has brought such joy and confidence into our lives as we depend upon Him. He constantly points us to You in His teachings and we are learning to love You just as we love Him. We do not know how You, as His father, allowed Him to endure the cross – but we are so thankful for your love for us expressed in Jesus.
Lord we recognize that we deserve nothing from You. Your love has endured with us through so many failures and stumbles. We could only expect your disapproval and ultimately hell… but because of your Mercy we are able to speak to You this moment. Your mercy is enduring, overwhelming, overflowing.
Father, Jesus taught us to pray “our Father”, and we can truly do this because we have been born again into Your forever Family. As we look back at our lives before we knew You, we shudder with shame, regret, and guilt. We do not dwell there, though, because we are filled with rejoicing at being born into such a diverse and wonderful Family. Thank you so much for Your willingness to adopt us, Father us, grow us, and mentor us in Spirit.
Without You, we have no hope. No hope now – for we have tried to arrange and fix our lives on our own. We’ve just made a mess of it. No hope ever – we have no power to save ourselves. And so we await with patience the hope that is ours now, but which will be ours forever when it is fulfilled. As you know, we live in a hopeless world – a result of hopeless choices … only You can give us hope.
Thank you for hope that includes the resurrection. The Divine testimony of the resurrection of Christ we read in our Bibles gives us the assurance that this resurrection is in your capable hands. We will arise … we will see our loved ones again … this life is not all there is. Some days, that’s the only thing that keeps us going.
Everything we own has an expiration date. The gold we wear won’t last into eternity. The possessions we so carefully inventory will be ash. But the inheritance that You have provided is in Your powerful hands. Forgive us for being so attached to this world. Remind us often of Your incredible provision … what awaits Your family.
~Shield of God’s Power~
Father we know that we are not shielded from disaster, troubles, or crisis. These things we experience (sometimes daily). But we know that no matter what happens on this earth, you are our eternal shield, the Enemy cannot have us. We remember through our tears and pain that we belong to You forever.
Our expressions of praise for who You are are inadequate, incomplete, lacking … but please accept them and grow within us the capacity for more. Thank you Father, Amen.