February 14, 2023
Prayer, it is the act of pausing and speaking to God directly. I recently came to learn that prayer can be formed by three words which are Thanksgiving, Intercession and Supplication. These words should seem very familiar if you are a reader of the Bible. In fact, Paul, a New Testament writer, almost always bunches these words together when he speaks about prayer. First, thanksgiving which is the posture of the heart when we pray to God the Father. It is the act of positioning our heart with gratitude despite our circumstances. Second, intercession and this is simply prayer by intervening or pleading on behalf of another person or people. Finally, supplication which is praying by asking or begging for something earnestly and humbly. These three words are only a sample of what a prayer can entail. To pose our heart with thanksgiving, it requires an alignment of the heart and the mind to remind ourselves of all that God has done in the past to inform our present and future. This reminder leads us to be content in what we have today and be grateful for our daily bread. To intercede or to make supplication, it requires us to intervene on someone’s behalf and to make our requests known to God. Now we know what makes up a prayer, who do we pray for. The answer is everyone. Our heart is drawn to self-exalt and it seeks self interest before others and this is no different when it comes to prayer. Note, there is absolutely nothing wrong with praying for ourselves but we ought to not forget to pray for others. To pray for all people. To pray for others means to pray for the body to Christ, His church. It also means to pray for the world, and yes even to pray for our enemies. If the world doesn’t believe then how can they pray to the One True God? This is where our prayers come in. We ought to intercede and petition on the world’s behalf for God to move in their lives. Let not our heart grow bitter toward the world that it prevents us from intervening and petitioning on its behalf. Prayer is simply calling out on God not only for ourselves but for all people as well. This was true when Paul instructed Timothy on how he should proceed with prayer and it is true for us today.
First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people.1 Timothy 2:1
May our prayer life be for all people and be filled with thanksgiving, intercession and supplication. May God move as His church prays and let His church be the instrument that makes these prayers answered.
Photo credit: Nathan Dumlao