Tuesday, April 22, 2008

RESORUCE ~ PrayKids

April 2008
IN THIS ISSUE:
Deception at Camp Gilgal
Featured April Resource: "Praying for My Mom"
"I Will Bring You Home"
PrayKids! Theme Packs
Help Kids Grow Their Prayer Lives
Parents "411": Bless Their Socks Off
PrayKids! Sampler Packs
Parting Thought...


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* Coaching? Teaching? Preaching? on prayer - Contact Phil@nppn.org
* Pastor Phil's ministry schedule: http://nppn.org/Schedule.htm
* Join the Church Prayer Leaders Network @ http://www.PrayerLeader.com

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Prayer? Think About It, Please...

Thinking and Praying

Do you think much before you pray? How about thinking as you pray?


I’ve observed several categories of pray-ers. Some just begin full speed ahead and spontaneously pray all over the place. Others seem so organized that even the Holy Spirit would have difficulty intervening. Still others simply string together learned phrases without much thought – “lead, guide and direct;” “bless the gift and the giver.” Then again there are those who cannot pray a complete sentence without using the word “just” at least once – “just bless;” “just watch over us;” “just help us.” I call it the Prayer of the Just. It is a biblical fact that God hears some prayers and chooses to not hear others (Isa. 59:2; Jn. 9:31).


It strikes me that perhaps the prayers that God chooses to not hear are the ones that are not divinely inspired to be offered. Valid, out-spoken prayers may be the result of quiet, in-spoken inspiration from God. How else would God know what we need before we ask and be in the process of responding to us even as we intercede? So, maybe we should listen more and talk less. Sounds like what I was told as a child.


Perhaps as a child of God, I need to be told again. How about you?

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* Coaching? Teaching? Preaching? on prayer - Contact Phil@nppn.org
* Pastor Phil's ministry schedule: http://nppn.org/Schedule.htm
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Sunday, April 06, 2008

Training Leaders for Reflection and Prayer Days and Short Retreats


Dr. Evelyn C. Davis, Wycliffe and SIL International Training Consultant, is glad to announce that Lutheridge Retreat near Asheville, NC, where she will be doing the complete Reflection and Prayer Training May 14-23, 2008 has now opened up some available space for leaders (and others) to join the group May 19 to 23.

Those who want to attend may arrive any of the days listed above and stay for a few days, or for the entire short session. For the detailed information, with a short application form, contact evelyn_davis@wycliffe.org.

A Special Opportunity (choose the dates you can attend)

Evelyn Davis, Ed.D. International Training Consultant, Wycliffe and SIL

Evelyn_Davis@wycliffe.org or Evelyn_Davis@sil.org Mobile phone: 828-450-2093

I will be facilitating the Training Leaders for Reflection and Prayer Days and Short Retreats at Lutheridge near Asheville, NC May 14-23.

A number of you have indicated that you would like to attend, but that your schedule is such that you can’t be away for nine nights and ten days. I am delighted to inform you that Lutheridge has some available rooms for several of the days that we will be there, and so I invite you to join us.

There are no rooms available until Monday, May 19th. You may join us on Monday, and stay as many nights as you would like. We leave Friday morning, May 23rd. Here are the days/topics:

. Monday AfternoonPrayer Areas and Issues (arrive by Monday noon)

. Tuesday - The Servant Leader (arrive by Monday night)

. Wednesday - NT Images of Adult Growth and Change (arrive by Tuesday night)

. Thursday - Let’s Pray! —how to lead prayer sessions (arrive by Wednesday night)

. Friday Morning - Prayer, Sharing, Evaluation, Communion (we conclude late morning)

As above, you can arrive any day, and stay as many nights as you choose. On Monday there is a separate topic for the morning and afternoon, so you should arrive by noon to experience the afternoon topic. But for the other topics, note that you need to arrive at least by the evening before the day of that topic. You will not experience a topic well unless you are present for all of it! However, if you arrive earlier than the evening on the day before your first topic, you are welcome to ‘sit in’ on whatever the group is doing.

A short application form is on the second page—please fill it in and return to me electronically.

Summary of the Cost:

  1. A registration fee of $25.00. Note the information on the application form re how to pay.
  2. The accommodations and meals are $55.00 a night. If you are there for part of a day, then Lutheridge will tell you the individual meal cost. The good news is that the Foundation that gives scholarships will pay $25.00 a day for you. You will write your check to Lutheridge for the balance before you depart.
  3. The foundation will also pay for your copy of the topic(s) that you attend. If you want copies of the other materials used in the Reflection and Prayer sessions, some will be available for you to purchase, and the updated CDs will be available for you to purchase as well.
  4. Your other cost will be the travel. If you can get a ticket into the Asheville airport for a reasonable price, please do so, as Lutheridge is only 20 minutes away (and we will arrange pickups). If it is cheaper for you to fly into Charlotte, rent a car at the airport there, and turn it in at the Asheville airport (we will still arrange a pickup at the Asheville airport for you).
  5. Be sure to let us know your arrival time and pickup needs. If you are driving and need the directions, let us know that as well.

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* Coaching? Teaching? Preaching? on prayer - Contact Phil@nppn.org
* Pastor Phil's ministry schedule: http://nppn.org/Schedule.htm
* Join the Church Prayer Leaders Network @ http://www.PrayerLeader.com

Thursday, April 03, 2008

The Problem With Problem-Solving Praying

When there are tasks to be done and problems to be solved, Creators; like writers, designers, musicians, and artists are dreamers and visionaries conceptualize unseen solutions to problems.
They see things before they exist. They begin with a purpose, and then approach everything single-mindedly. Whatever they do should relate to that purpose.

They work instinctively, don't particularly like structure, and are often frustrated by directions. Creators are “pregnant” with an idea until their concept becomes a reality. During this process, they impart a bit of themselves in the product. Our mighty God is The Creator; and he answers prayer creatively.

For example, we hired a company to extend the patio on our home. It was little more than a small slab of concrete at the time. When the designer came in he sat down at our dining table and pulled out his portfolio (collection of past projects he’d designed) and his pen and paper. After opening pleasantries I said, “Let me explain what we’d like to do with our patio.”

He grabbed his pen and paper and said, “I think I know what you want. You’d like to extend it in this direction and shape.” We said, “Yes, that’s a good idea, and…” He interrupted, “Then you want to…”

In five minutes he had designed the complete project—without our help, I might add. He didn’t need our instructions or ideas. He’s paid to create.

When we pray, as many do, with "problem-solving" in mind, we most often overlook God's plan. Rather than make our plea and submit to Creator God and his plans for the solution, we want to instruct him in our praying. Such requests frustrate a creator!

Job tried instructing God. And in Job 38, God said, "Job, why are you instructing me? Where were you when I created the world? I didn't need your help then. And I don't need your instructions now."
Think about this. When you pray, “God, please let me get that job,” you are praying, “God, please do for me the thing I have already decided is best for me. I’ve done all the thinking, all you have to do, God, is copy me, I have it lined out: give me the job.” In so doing, you are appealing to God's productive side, rather than his cre­ative side. You’re elevating “problem solving” above God’s higher purposes. You’re instructing him as to what you want and how you want it, rather than trusting the Creator to demonstrate his power by accomplishing his purpose in your matter.

Can you see how this prayer in itself transgresses the creative nature of God? You aren’t asking him to activate his unique plan for you. You are asking him to produce for you what you have already decided is best. So you are not praying to God as Creator. You are overlooking the fact that he wants to do things in you and for you that are “…exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think…” (Eph. 3:20, KJV), or as Jeremiah wrote, “… marvelous and wondrous things that you could never figure out on your own” (Jer. 33:3b, MSG ).

Now think about this: why are you giving God instructions? Why are you trying to engage God in your plans and purposes, instead of recognizing that he has plans and purposes and a will for you—plans that are far bigger than you realize!

Since God’s response will be above what you can ask or think, something that you could never figure out on your own, then what good are your instructions? Resist the urge to explain things to your omniscient God when you pray. Fight the urge to give him directions as to how you want Him to solve your problems. Ask Him to show you the big picture! Learn what God does, and why and how he does it. Most of His intervention in history has been as a creator.
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By prayer coach Eddie Smith from his book How to be Heard in Heaven, available from www.PrayerBookstore.com
Or call: 800-569-4825 or 713-466-4009

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* Coaching? Teaching? Preaching? on prayer - Contact Phil@nppn.org
* Pastor Phil's ministry schedule: http://nppn.org/Schedule.htm
* Join the Church Prayer Leaders Network @ http://www.PrayerLeader.com