Paul’s School of Prayer (Part 1)

If you’re interested in learning how to pray better, you’ve come to the right place. Paul’s school of prayer is open and you can learn from a master of prayer.

Ephesians 1.15-19 – I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, and for this reason

I do not cease to give thanks for you as I remember you in my prayers,

That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation as you come to know him,

So that, with the eyes of your heart enlightened, you may perceive what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance among the saints,

And what is the immeasurable greatness of his power for us who believe, according to the working of his great power.

How Often?

Paul prayed about some things every day and wrote, “I do not cease to give thanks for you as I remember you in my prayers” (verse 16).

Who or what should receive emphasis in our daily prayers?

As a student in school, take notes and list the people who you believe you should pray for each day.

Who or what should be prayed for on an occasional basis?

It is easy to be overwhelmed with the number of prayer burdens to the point that our prayers seem weak and unfocused.

In your notebook, write the days of the week. Besides that day, list a prayer category that will be your focus.

For example, on Sunday the prayer focus will be the classes and worship service.

Wisdom and Revelation

Paul’s first petition for the church was “that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation as you come to know him” (verse 17).

Get a mental image of one of the people for whom you pray every day. Next, focus your mind on the connection you have with God.

Intentionally consider each word that you are bringing to God.

Spirit: More than a human attitude. We are asking for the Holy Spirit to assist our human spirit to do something only God can do.

Wisdom: Mental excellence in its highest and fullest sense.

The prayer asks for the Holy Spirit to give this to the person for whom you pray.

Revelation: The disclosure of divine truth. Revelation uncovers what has previously been hidden from sight.

Knowledge: Discernment, acquaintance, recognition. The Holy Spirit allows humans to experience intimate communion with God.

We may know who Patrick Mahomes is, but few know him as a friend.

Knowledge of God is more than knowing “about” God. Knowledge of God is knowing him as a friend.

Try praying this meaningful prayer for the person on your “pray daily” list.

The Result of Knowledge

Verse 18 describes what can be expected when the prayer for wisdom, revelation, and knowledge takes hold in our friend’s life.

So that, with the eyes of your heart enlightened, you may perceive what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance among the saints (verse 18).

Even though this is the result of answered prayer, it can also be turned into a petition.

Hearts enlightened: Because of sin, our “senseless hearts were darkened” (Romans 1.21).

We pray for God to shine his light on the inner person so we can see the hope of our calling.

Hope: The expectation or confidence of a reality.

Inheritance: Jesus told his followers, “You are my friends” (John 15.14-15). Friendship with Jesus is the inheritance of the believer.

There are many “shiny objects” to divert our attention away from the best gift we can receive. Prayer asks God to reveal the riches of this glorious inheritance to the people for whom we pray.

Power

The knowledge of God’s immense power should cause us to adjust our behavior. That is the theme of the third petition.

What is the immeasurable greatness of his power for us who believe, according to the working of his great power (verse 19).

Every aspect of this prayer is dependent on God. There is no room for self-sufficiency.

We pray for others and ourselves that we align our lives with the Holy Spirit because the Spirit is the source of power for the best life possible.

Application

Paul is the master teacher in God’s school of prayer. Let’s learn from him and put his lessons into practice.

YouTube Video and Prayer

Rudy Ross and I discuss this passage on YouTube today. It is on the Bob Spradling channel.

Please email your prayer request to bsprad49@gmail.com. The Maywood prayer team will pray for you.

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