Whether we realize it or not, we are totally dependent on God for life and strength and everything. He is omnipotent. We are small and weak. He is omniscient and wise. We are vastly ignorant and easily fooled. He is gracious and merciful. We are in desperate need of his grace and mercy.
By nature, we run and hide from God. We don’t want him to see our imperfections, guilt, and shame. By nature, we try to be self-sufficient and live independently of him. We think overly high thoughts of ourselves, and we think distorted, low thoughts of him.
Through the gospel of Jesus, we stop running and hiding. Jesus died in our place and bore the penalty for our guilt, wiping away our shame. He reconciles us to the Father, and we are adopted by grace. We can then begin to address God as our Father! And who wouldn’t want to talk to this Father? We have the ear and the resources of the King of the Universe!
So, Jesus taught his disciples to pray like this:
Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil (Matthew 6:9-13).
And like this:
Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened. Or which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him (Matthew 7:7-11)!
This is a broken world. There is pain, need, and suffering all around us. We are broken people. We are in need of transformation, growth, and empowerment of all kinds. So, at Bethel, we want to be a community devoted to prayer. We pray on our own—anytime, anywhere. We pray with others, whether meeting up for coffee, for dinner, or in the hallway at church. We pray in our Community Groups. And on and on. One primary opportunity available to everyone is our Wednesday night prayer meeting. We meet on Wednesday nights from 6:30-7:30pm at the church building. We take about half that time to study the Bible, and the other half to pray for our church, our community, and the world. We hope to see you there!