Praying the Scriptures for Your Teenagers: Discover How to Pray Gods Purpose for Their Lives
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Oddly enough, my depression seemed to be growing in intensity. Every morning when I awoke I was plagued with thoughts of suicide. I was so convinced that Jesus was the answer to every need that I regularly visited the counseling office. The counsel I received always helped, but the problem of depression was never completely eliminated. Even though I had the gift of eternal life and total forgiveness from Jesus, I had a loving pastor who taught me much about God and the Bible, I had a good husband and financial security so I no longer had to work to survive, yet I still felt like I had nothing to live for.
What was the matter with me? Was a part of me missing, just like with my mother? I was still afraid that I would end up crazy like her. If I had much to be happy about and yet remained depressed, if I had everything to live for and still wanted to die, then what hope was there for me? As the suicidal feelings increased, Michael urged me to call the counseling office again. She was steeped in the Word of God and had great faith to pray for and see people set free from emotional pain.
I entered her office and sat in the chair across the desk from her. She looked up from her papers and gave me a big smile. She had a beautiful face of intelligence, understanding, and warmth, and I felt comfortable confessing my problems and past to her. She listened for a long time, nodding thoughtfully and seeming not the least bit shocked by anything I said.
I shook my head. It sounded like a strange activity involving red-eyed demons and whirlwinds, but I could tell by her calm demeanor that this was not what she meant.
A lot of people are afraid of deliverance because they think it will change them. Our responsibility is to pray for deliverance from whatever oppression is tormenting you, whether fear or suicidal thoughts or whatever.
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Second Corinthians says that Jesus will continue to deliver you. I felt it lift. The next morning I awoke without any feelings of depression whatsoever — no thoughts of suicide, no heaviness in my chest, no fearful anticipation of the future. Day after day it was the same. I never again experienced those feelings, nor the paralysis that accompanied them. I had gone into that counseling office knowing Jesus as Savior, but I came out knowing Him also as my Deliverer. I feared I would do to him what had been done to me.
I read every book available on the subject of parenting and attended each Christian child-rearing seminar I could find. I tried to do my best with all this good and helpful information, but it was never enough. Kidnapping, drowning, disfiguring accidents, irreparable injuries, diseases, sexual molestation, abuse, or death all played across my mind as possibilities for his future.
As much as I tried not to be an overreacting parent, every newspaper, magazine article, or TV newscast on crime made me more concerned for his welfare. Plus we lived in Los Angeles, a city where crime was rampant. It was more than I could handle. How can I ever have peace? Over the next few weeks the Lord spoke to my heart about entrusting Christopher to Him. My husband and I had dedicated our son to God in a church service, but God wanted more than that.
He wanted us to continue giving Christopher to Him on a daily basis. Rather, we would declare ourselves to be in full partnership with God. He would shoulder the heaviness of the burden and provide wisdom, power, protection, and ability far beyond ourselves. In doing this, I learned to identify every concern, fear, worry, or possible scenario that came into my mind as a prompting by the Holy Spirit to pray for that particular thing.
When it surfaced again, I prayed about it again. I also learned that I should not try to force my own will on my child in prayer.
This only leads to frustration and disappointment for all concerned. Help me to raise him Your way, and may Your will be done in his life. Over the next twelve years God answered my prayers in many wonderful ways, and today I see the results. Today I pray for my adult children. My husband and I had problems in our marriage and at its worst point, I prayed for a miracle. That meant each time I prayed for him I had to confess my own hardness of heart. I saw how deeply hurt and unforgiving of him I was. I only want God to convict him of how cruel he has been, I thought.
Deliver me from all of it. Little by little, I began to see changes occur in both of us. When Michael became angry, instead of reacting negatively, I prayed for him. I asked God to give me insight into what was causing his rage. He did. I asked Him what I could do to make things better. He showed me. Every day, prayer built something positive.
Sorry, Mom. But when a man marries, he leaves his father and mother and becomes one with his wife Matthew They are a team, one unit, unified in spirit. Can you imagine praying for the right side of your body and not the left? The same is true of you and your husband. If you pray for yourself and not him, you will never find the blessings and fulfillment you want.
He gives us whatever we will fall for, whether it be low self-esteem, pride, the need to be right, miscommunication, or the bowing to our own selfish desires. In every broken marriage, there is at least one person whose heart is hard against God. We only see the way it is, not the way God wants it to become. When we pray, however, our hearts become soft toward God and we get a vision. We see there is hope.
We have faith that He will restore all that has been devoured, destroyed, and eaten away from the marriage. We can trust Him to take away the pain, hopelessness, hardness, and unforgiveness. We are able to envision His ability to resurrect love and life from the deadest of places. The joy of seeing something hopelessly dead brought to life is the greatest joy we can know. The power that resurrected Jesus is the very same power that will resurrect the dead places of your marriage and put life back into it.
We have to go through the pain to get to the joy. We have to believe the part of your relationship that has been eaten away by pain, indifference, and selfishness can be restored. We have to trust that God is big enough to accomplish all this and more. He can heal the wounds and put love back in your heart. Nothing and no one else can. Lift us out of the pit of unforgiveness. Speak through us so that our words reflect Your love, peace, and reconciliation. Tear down this wall between us and teach us how to walk through it.
Enable us to rise up from this paralysis and move into the healing and wholeness You have for us. Ask God to give you a new husband or a new wife. He is able to take the one you have and make him or her a new creation in Christ. Husbands and wives are not destined to fight, emotionally disconnect, live in marital deadness, be miserable, or divorce. We can fight for them in prayer and not give up, because as long as we are praying, there is hope. With God, nothing is ever as dead as it seems. Not even your own feelings. I learned that the best things for my marriage was for me to have women prayer partners with whom I prayed every week.
I now believe this is vital for any marriage. If you can find two or more strong faith-filled people whom you thoroughly trust, and with whom you can share the longings of your heart, set up a weekly prayer time. It will change your life. In fact, I wrote it for myself as much as I wrote it for you. Many days I find life difficult rather than easy, complex rather than simple, potentially dangerous rather than safe, and exhausting rather than exhilarating. But I have come to know that God can smooth my path, calm the storms, keep me and all I care about safe, and even make my way simple when I ask Him to carry the complexities of life for me.
Not without prayer. Or we only pray about the most pressing issues and neglect to take the time to really get close to God, to know Him better, and to share with Him the deepest longings of our heart. In our pray-and-run existence, we shut off the very avenue by which He brings blessings into our lives. So pray that God would give them sight—spiritual sight. Pray that God would grant them repentance. Unbelievers cannot repent without the enabling grace of God.
So pray that God would grant them repentance, that this repentance would lead them to a knowledge of the truth. You have prayed for unbelievers using different words and approaching from different angles. But you should also pray for yourself.
Pray that you will develop relationship with them. For people to be saved they must first hear the good news of the gospel. For them to hear the good news of the gospel, they must first encounter Christians—Christians like you. Pray that you would develop deeper, more significant relationship with them so you can, in turn, speak truth.
Bible Study Lessons
And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? Pray for opportunities to minister to them. Pray for opportunities to minister to unbelievers so that your ministry can have an evangelistic effect. Pray for them faithfully and persistently. Our temptation is to grow discouraged in prayer, to pray for a while and, when we see no visible results, to give up.
But God calls us to persevere in prayer. See also the parable of the persistent widow in Luke Pray for a burden to plead for their souls. Paul was willing to tell the church at Rome of his great longing to see the salvation of the lost. Do you share this deep longing? Pray that God would give you a great burden for souls. Pray for boldness in generating and taking opportunities to speak the gospel.
Even Paul longed for this boldness and for the confidence that he was speaking the right and best words. Pray that God would give you the boldness and, that when you take the opportunities, that he would then guide your words. Pray for other believers to encounter them. God almost always uses a succession of people to share the gospel with people before they are saved.
Pray, then, that God would lead other Christians into the lives of the unbelievers you love, that they too would provide an example of Christian living and that they too would speak the gospel. Pray that God would use any circumstance to do his work in them. We pray to a God who is sovereign and who sovereignly works his good will.
Often he saves people through difficult circumstances, through bringing them to the very end of themselves. Pray, then, that God would arrange circumstances, whether easy or difficult, to lead them to salvation. Pray that God would extend his mercy to them. God assures us that he wishes for all people to turn to him in repentance and faith. He receives no joy from seeing people perish. Pray, then, that God would be glorified in the salvation of these people. Pray with confidence.
Finally, pray with confidence.