Teach Your Family To Pray The Word Of God (Part 2)
By Kim Butts
God’s perfect plans, purposes and will for your life and the lives of your family members are contained in the pages of His amazing Word. As you spend time reading the Bible devotionally and/or for study, take time to pray through what you have just read and ask the Lord to help you to be obedient to His will. Prayer is the life-giving component to the Word. It is the divine activity within which we can interact with the Holy God of Israel, our Abba Father. Whatever the Holy Spirit may reveal to you as you spend time listening to the voice of God can always be confirmed in the Bible. If not, then what you have heard is not from the Lord.
Continuing on from last month’s article on this topic, here are some additional reasons why praying Scripture can empower your prayer lives individually and corporately as a family. As you gain understanding and begin to incorporate the Word into your prayers, you will pray with greater boldness and effectiveness than you could ever have thought or imagined, because you will be interceding in God’s good, pleasing and perfect will (Rom. 12:2).
Praying Scripture Is Powerful Because:
9. The Word of God is flawless: "And the words of the Lord are flawless, like silver refined in a furnace of clay, purified seven times" (Psa. 12:6). "As for God, His way is perfect; the word of the Lord is flawless. He is a shield for all who take refuge in Him" (Psa. 18:30). When you pray God’s Word back to Him you can always have confidence in knowing that you are praying something that is in His perfect will! There are no mistakes in His Word! This is a vital thing to teach your family, because children must learn that the Word of God is completely reliable.
10. The Word of God will stand forever: "Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will never pass away" (Luke 21:33). "…But the word of the Lord stands forever" (1 Pet. 1:25). "Your word, O Lord, is eternal; it stands firm in the heavens" (Psa. 119:89). Nothing can bring down or diminish the Word. Jesus, the Word of God, is forever! Continually train your children to trust that His Word will always be the same yesterday, today and forever. Nothing is to be added or taken away from it. His Word is eternal.
11. Praying the Word of God helps us to develop an intimate relationship with Him and a desire to know Him better: Example: Read Psalm 63:1-8. When was the last time you longed for God this way? Doesn’t it develop a hunger and a thirst for Him in your spirit? As you pray through God’s Word, He will increase your desire to know Him more deeply and intensely than ever before. If your children are passionate about worldly things, praying Scripture will help them to begin yearning after what is spiritual instead, as the Holy Spirit works upon their hearts. When we become families who are passionate for Jesus, things of the world become less important.
12. His Word reminds us to stay focused upon Him in prayer: "But my eyes are fixed on You, O Sovereign Lord…" (Psa. 141:8a). Jehoshaphat said, "We do not know what to do, but our eyes are upon You" (2 Chron. 20:12c). In good times or bad, we need to have our eyes fixed and focused upon the Lord. Sometimes we try to take care of things that don’t go the way we think they should. When we do, we are functioning in our own flesh, and can often make the situation worse, or fail in our attempts to turn things around. Learn as a family to take everything to the Lord prayerfully, asking Him to take charge and work His will in the midst of whatever situation you find yourselves. Be sure that prayer is always your first response, and not your last resort.
13. Praying the Word gives us authority to stand against the enemy: The Word is the only offensive piece of the armor of God (Eph. 6:10-18). Remember how Jesus went to battle against Satan in the desert using the Word? You can too! "Through You we push back our enemies; through Your name we trample our foes" (Psa. 44:5). Read 1 John 2:14 also. Satan knows that prayer defeats him, so he tries to erode our confidence in God’s ability to answer our prayers. Teach your children the importance and power of Jesus’ Name!
14. Praying the Word of God and hearing it prayed, builds our faith in God’s ability to hear and answer: "Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ" (Rom. 10:17). Here is a good example: "And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise him up" (Jas. 5:15). When we hear the Word of Christ, it builds our faith. When we pray the Word of Christ, it demonstrates our faith in what He will do.
15. Praying the Word of God allows the Holy Spirit to work in and through us: "Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God" (Eph. 6:17). "But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you" (John 14:26). Train your family to know that the Holy Spirit is our divine Teacher. He knows everything about the mind and heart of God, and wants to teach these things to us, if we are willing to take the time to listen.
16. Praying the Word of God protects us from sin: "I have hidden Your word in my heart that I might not sin against You" (Psa. 119:11). This shows us the importance of memorization – we can utilize Scripture in our prayer lives no matter where we are if the Word is hidden in our hearts. Train your children in this vital discipline so that they will be better prepared to stand against sinful behavior.
17. Praying the Word helps us to pray about our own obedience to the Word! It gives us our instruction and guidance daily. "Teach me, O Lord, to follow Your decrees; then I will keep them to the end. Give me understanding, and I will keep Your law and obey it with all my heart. Direct me in the path of Your commands, for there I find delight. Turn my heart toward Your statutes and not toward selfish gain. Turn my eyes away from worthless things; preserve my life according to Your word" (Psa. 119:33-37). "Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says" (Jas. 1:22). Do you pray after hearing a powerful message from the Word or after reading the Word, or while reading it? We should be asking God to bring His Word to life in us and through us!
18. Praying the Word helps us to stand on a firm foundation: "I will show you what he is like who comes to Me and hears My words and puts them into practice. He is like a man building a house, who dug down deep and laid the foundation on rock. When a flood came, the torrent struck that house but could not shake it, because it was well built" (Luke 6:47-48). Are your children’s feet standing firm upon the Rock? Praying the Word of God will help to build that foundation!
19. His Word will ALWAYS accomplish what He desires: "…so is My word that goes out from My mouth: it will not return to Me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it" (Isa. 55:11). It is important to train our families to understand that we should always pray for the Lord’s will to be done on earth rather than for our own selfish will to be done in heaven.
20. The promises of His Word encourage and uplift us: "...I will never leave you nor forsake you" (Josh. 1:5). "‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. You will seek Me and find Me when you seek Me with all of your heart’" (Jer. 29:11-13). Help your family to learn how to find God’s wonderful promises and then pray them for your lives!
21. Praying God’s Word is powerful because it is the TRUTH! Jesus prayed for all believers in John 17:17, "Sanctify them by the truth; Your word is truth." "If you hold to My teaching, you are really My disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free" (John 8:31-32). "For the word of the Lord is right and true; He is faithful in all He does" (Psa. 33:4). "And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the Gospel of your salvation" (Eph. 1:13). There are generations of believers alive today who do not embrace absolute truth. Praying Scripture will help your children to know this truth: Lord, You are right and true and You are faithful in all that You do.
22. It pleases the heart of God to respond to prayers that delight Him, and we know that His Word gives Him pleasure: "Dear friends, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God and receive from Him anything we ask, because we obey His commands and do what pleases Him" (1 John 3:21-22). As praying the Word becomes more a part of who you are as a family, your children will learn that their obedience to the Word is important to the Father.
23. The boldness of praying the Word strengthens our witness to unbelievers: "For it is God’s will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish men" (1 Pet. 2:15). As your family begins to pray bold prayers from the Word of God and He begins to answer, those who doubt or are uncertain of who Jesus is, will have to take another look.
24. God’s Word teaches us to worship Him as Creator of all things: "For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, because it is consecrated by the word of God and prayer" (1 Tim. 4:4-5). "By the word of the Lord were the heavens made, their starry host by the breath of His mouth" (Psa. 33:6). Read First Chronicles 16:23-36! God has even created the language of our worship!
25. We should pray Scripture SO THAT God is honored and glorified! "When He heard this, Jesus said, ‘This sickness will not end in death. No, it is for God’s glory SO THAT God’s Son may be glorified through it" (John 11:4). God received glory when Lazarus was raised from the dead. "And I will do whatever you ask in My name, SO THAT the Son may bring glory to the Father" (John 14:13). "All You have made will praise You, O Lord; Your saints will extol You. They will tell of the glory of Your kingdom and speak of Your might, SO THAT all men may know of Your mighty acts and the glorious splendor of Your kingdom" (Psa. 145:10-12). Whenever you pray Scripture, you bring glory and honor to the Father! The "So That" Prayer makes every prayer a kingdom prayer – a God-honoring, getting to the heart of the Father prayer!
As your family studies the Word and grows together in the Lord, you will discover many more reasons to pray Scripture. Write them down and apply them to your lives. Make sure that you impress these principles upon your children! Mentor others using these principles. What will it be like when every prayer prayed in your home is prayed in the good, pleasing and perfect will (Rom. 12:2) of God? Perhaps you will see completely transformed families, churches, communities, and nations.
One reminder – when you pray God’s will for your lives and for others, be prepared to be yielded and obedient if He should ask you to be the answer to the prayers that you pray!