Often forgotten when making plans and establishing strategies for disciple-making, prayer is not only a “tool” for us, but also our place of refuge, rest, and intimacy. In Kingdom Prayer we also enjoy the opportunity to see how much His work is advancing within.
Our tendency not to pray
It often feels like a real waste of time, payer does. This is particularly the case among people like us: high achievers, go-getters, captains of our own destiny.
We have things to do, places to be, people to serve.
And yes, we pray.
We pray on the way, while driving. We pray early in the morning – right before we check our email. We pray before going to bed.
Some times we even slow down and pray for long periods of time. Especially when things are clearly out of our hands, which does not happen that often, thank God!
Due to the amount of resources we have access to, because of all the blessing we enjoy – great teachers, books, curriculum, discipleship models, strategic planning tools, apps, etc. – there is very little time for meaningful prayer.
And when we pray, our approach resembles more a drive-by, a through-the-grenade-over-the-wall and hope for the best.
Kingdom Prayer is different. And Kingdom Prayer is what we need when we engage in making disciples at home, in our communities, or among the nations.
Definition of Kingdom Prayer
Kingdom Prayer is informed, guided, empowered by Scripture. For KP we take our cues from His Word, and not our creativity or unfiltered personal inclinations. When praying Kingdom prayers we do not limit our worship, intersession, confession to what we may be experiencing at that particular junction. Our mind and soul are stimulated by the greatness of His character, by the awe-striking scope of His ability and willingness to restore sinners back to Him. Eternity is in perspective, giving us the right points of reference to face the issues of the here and now. Daily life – the needs and situations it brings – is consider and never, never denied when we pray this way; KP is not an excuse to avoid our current situation, it is not our “happy place” where we run to, with our eyes close and hands covering our ears in fear and dissolution, pretending that everything is nice and rosy.
Kingdom Prayer deals with reality.
Through KP we bring two realities in direct contact with each other: the reality of the condition of this life and the reality of His Beauty – His Person, Work, and the implications thereof.
In Kingdom Prayer we are free from our own limitations. We are free to ask beyond our imagination and mental capabilities. We are free to see how much God the Holy Spirit – the Third Person of the Holy Trinity – has changed us by looking at the (restored) inclinations of our hearts: we find ourselves praying for individuals, communities, situations that, humanly speaking, either make no sense to pray for or we should not intercede for… like asking God to bless our enemies, to bring closer to Him those who may not be like us.
Benefits & meaning
The biggest benefit of Kingdom Prayer is how it clearly points to the work of the Gospel in our own hearts – since without the work of God the Holy Spirit restoring our heart back to Him, we simply couldn’t pray in this way.
Kingdom Prayer affirms and exposes His work in you.
It means, then, that the Gospel is real. It means that the Triune God of the Universe is active in your life. It means you are seeing the reality of His Beauty, first hand.
Another important benefit of a prayer life guided by His Word is the enjoyment it brings, the delight it becomes for our souls. Right there, where we can see the reality of sin, right there where the struggle is the hardest, right there the time we spend praying to Him becomes our very refuge and fortress. It becomes a sweet time and place where we enjoy intimacy with Him who loves us the most.
How to get started in Kingdom Prayer:
- Know that it’s not going to be easy. Ask the LORD to prepare you for what He wants to show you.
- Pick a very well defined passage of Scripture, e.g. a psalm, the 10 Commandments, the Lord’s Prayer, a prayer of Paul.
- Read that passage, taking time to stop a long the way for contemplation.
- Pray as God the Holy Spirit guides you, using the portion you’ve read as the starting point of your prayer.
- Try, as much as you can, to stay within the truth and direction set before you by His Word.