Sermon Reflection from January 8, 2023 | A New Prayer
As we begin a New Year, Pastor Alex is challenging us to look at the ‘old’ ways were have been doing things and seek a New way which through the transforming power of the Holy Spirit will produce a New You! Last week, he looked at God’s Word and challenged us to dig in, dive in and immerse ourselves so that our Newer You would be pointed to God through His Word. This week he is challenging us to talk to God and establish a firm and lasting connection to carry us through this New Year of 2023.
To start this New journey we need to have a conversation with God. That sounds easy enough but in reality it can be difficult. Finding and taking the time to stop the distractions that surround us and focus on communicating with God and be a challenge. There are some tools that might be helpful in this: your Bible is a great resource of how to talk with God, what to ask of Him and why you need to talk things over with Him. For example in Psalm 23 the psalmist, David, point us to God’s ability to provide, calm, guide, eliminate fear, protect from evil, provide tools for me to use, has prepared a place for me to be and will always have my best in mind. As you read the psalm you can pray for these things to be manifested in your life or the life of someone you are seeking to uplift.
The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
2 He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters,
3 he refreshes my soul.
He guides me along the right paths
for his name’s sake.
4 Even though I walk
through the darkest valley,
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.
5 You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
6 Surely your goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord
Another idea of how to start this conversation with God is to use the ACTS method. A- adoration. Start your prayer time with praise and adoration for who God is. A way to do this is to use the alphabet and pray an attribute of God with each letter, thanking him for his character that sustains you. C-confession. Over and over in scripture we are told to repent, which is being sorry for our sins. Tell God your failings and ask Him to help you over come through His Holy Spirit which dwells within you as a believer. T- thanks. Before we ask God for more, we need to be aware and thankful for all He has done for us. It puts things into perspective as nothing else can. Lastly, S- supplication which is talking to God about your needs and the needs of others. Hopefully, you will find scripture, the alphabet or ACTS helpful in starting that conversation with Almighty God.
How does one create a connection with God? Through prayer certainly but also reading His Word and fellowshipping with other believers helps us to see the importance of family, hope, relationships and strength that comes from linking ourselves together by faith. When we accept Jesus as our Savior, we join God’s family. He is our Father and we belong to Him and with Him. That is a connection that cannot be severed. I love John 10:28 “ I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand.” Through faith in Jesus, I belong to and with God for eternity, and no one or nothing can remove Him from me or me from Him! Praise God!
Why wouldn’t you want to have the Newer version of yourself? You can talk with God anytime or anyplace. You can be assured of your place in His family and will always have brothers and sisters in Christ to share in your hopes, joys and sorrows. You have a permanent relationship with God that no one can take away from you, ever! You belong to God and He desires a relationship with YOU!
Take time in this New Year to cultivate this God provided relationship through faith in Jesus and let the benefits spill over into each and every day of 2023!
A New You | A New Prayer
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Sermon series, "A New You" Today Alex Hardt share how Prayer Transforms the Heart
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