Recently I wrote that many of us want the Savior part of Christ but not always the Lordship part. In other words, we want to benefits of spending eternity in Heaven but not the Lord-of-my-life on earth part: http://wp.me/p1QSbw-8n. In addition, placing Christ as Lord of our lives is deciding to become a Disciple and requires complete surrender: http://wp.me/p1QSbw-91
So if we decide we want to surrender and we want to be a Disciple – what does that look like? What do we do? Over the next three weeks I will address the “what do we do part” and then the “what does it look like part.”
I recently read about a survey conducted of church planting organizations. The purpose of the survey was to help determine what type of people makes the best church planters. They surveyed the top 100 church plant leaders worldwide. The top 100 had planted at least 20 churches in the last year and one planted 500 churches.
There was only common element among the group. They were from various countries, ethnic backgrounds, personality types, ages, men and women, different education levels, etc.
The only common element was………...prayer.
The average leader surveyed prayed an average of 2.5 hours per day. This is the first part, the essential part, of the “what do we do part” if we want to be a Disciple. I am not saying we have to spend 2-3 hours in prayer every day – it is not a magic formula.
But it does need to be a significant amount of time. You cannot have an intimate relationship with anyone without spending a significant amount of time together.
And that is what God wants most from us – just us; time with us:
- God wants to spend time with us so we can have an intimate relationship with Him.
- He wants an intimate relationship with us so he can change our heart.
- He wants to change our heart so we can carry out His plans for us – serving and loving His people.
He doesn’t want our religious activity (going to church, serving the needy, sharing the Word, our money, etc.) unless He is the source. And He cannot be the source unless it flows out of a relationship with Him. This is where being a Disciple starts and it leads to a changed heart.
We need Him and He wants us. Do you ever think about this: The creator of the universe, the maker of all things, the One who created you desires to spend time with you! Talk with Him, share your deepest thoughts and concerns, and pour out your heart to Him in order to change your heart
This does take effort on our part. It takes discipline; it takes focus and it takes being intentional. Use the three P’s of prayer:
- Have a plan (a designated time) for prayer
- Have a place (a dedicated location) for prayer
- Most of all, as Billy Graham says “protect (a lack of excuses) your prayer time at all costs.”
Try it for 30 days and see if your life in not impacted in a significant way – God promises it.
Colossians 4:12 “Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.”
In His Service,
How to pray: http://wp.me/p1QSbw-6e
Prayers that get answered: http://wp.me/p1QSbw-6v