This week I had a feeling that our group needed to have a special time of prayer. In the end only 4 people showed up, but I don’t think that made the event any less important. It was good for me if nothing else.
I didn’t want to go with the whole stations thing, but at the same time I have some students who will not do well with “pray for an hour” as instructions so I tried to come up with some middle ground. I made a booklet that I called the Passionate Prayer Journal. You can check out all of the text bellow and if you want you can check out the pdf of the journal. (The cover art comes from the gallery over at creativemyk)
Passionate Prayer Print Versions
(print these front to back and then fold pages together and staple them in the middle to make a booklet.)
Here is the Text of the Journals
Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.
Tonight is about prayer. It is about an intimate retreat between you and God. Don’t get caught up in the stuff in this journal or what other people are doing. Don’t worry about what you may look like or whether or not you are doing things wrong. Spend the next hour focusing on God and spending time with Him through prayer.
If you would like some guidance to your prayer time this journal is for you. It will lead you to worship God, to pray about your own life, and to pray for your friends. There is no right or wrong way to use this journal. It was designed to take each prayer activity in turn, but feel free to pray as God inspires you to pray.
The Holiness of God
Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name. Bring an offering and come before him; worship the Lord in the splendor of his holiness.
—1 Chronicles 16:29
God is Holy. He is set apart and different from us. He is worthy of all of our praise and more. Prayer must begin with an acknowledgement that God is greater that we are. Prayer must begin with us setting aside our desires to be in control of our lives and accepting that God is bigger and more able than we are.
Take a moment and read through the following scriptures about the greatness of God. When you have finished write your own prayer of praise to God. Write who you know God to be as and specific things that God has done for you. Think about a friend who may not know about God and write everything you think that friend should know about Him.
You alone are the Lord. You made the heavens, even the highest heavens, and all their starry host, the earth and all that is on it, the seas and all that is in them. You give life to everything, and the multitudes of heaven worship you.
Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge.
Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name; worship the Lord in the splendor of his holiness.
“There is no one holy like the Lord; there is no one besides you; there is no Rock like our God. He is my stronghold, my refuge and my savior—
—1 Samuel 2:2
This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all.
—1 John 1:5
The Lord your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing.”
And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him.
—1 John 4:16
God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.
Think of your friends who don’t know God personally. Then think about friends that might have a need for God’s presence right now. Around the outside of the box write the names of those people.
Inside the box draw pictures of why God is worth following for you and for your friends. You may want to draw specific things that your friends may need from God. If you draw these things draw a line that connects the drawing and the name. Pray for your friends as you draw.
We can use the prayers of others as a guide for our own prayers. Read through the following prayers slowly. Then go back and say them as your own prayer.
Once you are finished, write a personal prayer to God. Ask God to make you passionate for the lost of our community. Ask God to give you a strong desire to tell your friends about Him.
Lord, make me a channel of thy peace;
that where there is hatred, I may bring love;
that where there is wrong, I may bring the spirit of forgiveness;
that where there is discord, I may bring harmony;
that where there is error, I may bring truth;
that where there is doubt, I may bring faith;
that where there is despair, I may bring hope;
that where there are shadows, I may bring light;
that where there is sadness, I may bring joy.
Lord, grant that I may seek rather to comfort than to be comforted;
to understand, than to be understood;
to love, than to be loved.
For it is by self-forgetting that one finds.
It is by forgiving that one is forgiven.
It is by dying that one awakens to eternal life.
—St. Francis of Assisi
Help us to spread your fragrance everywhere we go, flood our souls with your Spirit and life.Penetrate and possess our whole being so utterly that our lives may only be a radiance of yours.Shine through us and be so in us that every soul we come in contact with may feel your presence in our soul.Let them look up and see no longer us but only Jesus.Stay with us and then we shall begin to shine as you shine, so to shine as to be light to others.The light, O Jesus, will be all from you.None of it will be ours.It will be your shining on others through us.Let us thus praise you in the way you love best by shining on those around us.
—Daily Prayer of Mother Teresa
Lord, take me where You want me to go;
Let me meet who You want me to meet;
Tell me what You want me to say; and
Keep me out of your way.
—Father Mychal Judge – FDNY – died 9/11/01
You are holy, wonderful, majestic God.
You are the one true God of the universe.
You are holy, and righteous, and altogether worthy.
You are God.
You are all that need and all that I could ever want.
You are satisfaction and hunger
You are righteousness and mercy
You are holiness and grace
You alone are worthy of praise.
Father, I want to praise you more.
I want to worship you more.
Lord, I want to see your face
and know you more.
Disturb us, Lord, when
We are too well pleased with ourselves,
When our dreams have come true
Because we have dreamed too little,
When we arrived safely
Because we sailed too close to the shore.
Disturb us, Lord, when
With the abundance of things we possess
We have lost our thirst
For the waters of life;
Having fallen in love with life,
We have ceased to dream of eternity
And in our efforts to build a new earth,
We have allowed our vision
Of the new Heaven to dim.
Disturb us, Lord, to dare more boldly,
To venture on wider seas
Where storms will show your mastery;
Where losing sight of land,
We shall find the stars.
We ask You to push back
The horizons of our hopes;
And to push into the future
In strength, courage, hope, and love.
—sir francis drake -1577
Image of God
Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship
When people who don’t know Jesus look for Him they look at you. You are the picture of God that most of your friends see. What sort of picture are you presenting to them? How are you representing Christ?
Take some time and pray asking for the courage to take an honest look at your life. Think about the things in your life that are distracting others from God. Then write or draw those things on the outline of Jesus.
When you are finished, pray and ask God to forgive you.
Pray for Our Group
Kneel and pray for our group. You can come to the altar if you want. Pray that God will use us to minister to this community. Let God break your heart as you think about the people that we should be reaching who are still desperate to know about God.
Here are some things you can pray for:
A commitment to community
A passion for God and for worship
A deep desire to tell other people about Jesus
The integrity of the leaders and members of this group
Your Prayers, Their Shield
I don’t understand everything about prayer, but I do know that God has commanded us to pray for each other. Most of us pray for our friends when they are in trouble, but we should be praying much more than that. We should be praying for their integrity, praying that God will use them, praying that God will protect them from bad choices. In short, we should think of our prayers as their shield.
Use the outline of the shield to journal a prayer for your friends. If they don’t know Jesus pray for the privilege to talk to them about following Him.