A Call to Spiritual Reformation

It’s Saturday evening. I have just finished my final preparations for tomorrow’s first session of our 9:30 hour 2010 equipping class on prayer.

I’m wondering how much anyone else in our fellowship thinks with me how terribly important this effort is to the vitality and viability of our church in 2010? Oh how I pray many do.

After all, we say intercessory prayer is one of our core values, one of our ten priorities. Here is how we unpack it in our new member’s class:

We value Christ-connected prayer over the ministry. Apart from the power of Jesus Christ working in and through us we can accomplish nothing of lasting spiritual value that magnifies God’s glorious grace (John 15:5). Therefore we will relentlessly saturate every dimension of our ministry with prayer, petition, supplication, and intercession, along with thanksgiving, in order that we might continually abide in Christ, the true vine, and thus bear much fruit (John 15:7-8).

Looks good on paper or in a blog, but oh how much I/we struggle to make it a reality.

Hence the reason for our church-wide emphasis beginning tomorrow morning in the SDA fellowship hall. We want to grow in our experience of vital, intercessory prayer!

D. A. Carson writes in his introduction to the book we will use toward this end:

Just as God’s Word must reform our theology, our ethics, and our practices, so also must it reform our praying. The purpose of this book, then is to think through some of Paul’s prayers, so that we may align our prayer habits with his. We want to learn what to pray for, what arguments to use, what priorities we should adopt, what beliefs should shape our prayers, and much more (pp. 17-18).

Church, my praying needs reforming. What about yours?

6 responses

  1. PC,
    On the subject of prayer, I thought about the disciples asking Jesus in Luke 11:1 “…one of his disciples said to Him, “Lord, teach us to pray just as John also taught his disciples”.
    I think generally there is perhaps of lacking of praying because of a lack of teaching / practice of prayer as Carson seems to diagnose for the western church. Hope we all have open minds and hearts to how the LORD will teach us to pray through the example of the Apostle Paul. Glad we are studying this topic more in depth.

  2. Interesting thought, sir. You may be right, though I have found it easier to read about prayer and teach on it than to do it. I was encouraged by our start yesterday and look forward with you to what God will do. Thanks for your comment!

  3. Hello Pastor Curt,

    I am a recent graduate from The Master’s Seminary in California (and a former staff member with CCC). I have been invited to teach an adult Sunday school class at a church near our home in Glendale, CA. I am going to suggest we study through Carson’s “A Call to Spiritual Reformation.”

    I notice you have already created a study guide for this book. May I have permission to use your study guide in preparation for this Sunday school class?

    Blessings in Christ,
    – Matthew Carroll

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