Q. Do you have any suggestions for improving one's prayer life? To be honest, I feel as though mine isn't very exciting, and that my prayers don't pack that much power. —B.W., Glendale, Ariz.
A. Your question reminded me of a fast-food commercial in which the predictable nature of what everyone would eat for lunch was cast in the mantra of "same time, same place, same thing."
When our prayer life turns pedestrian in its nature, it is often an indication we have moved from being engaged in God's kingdom purposes to embracing a consumer mentality. One of the surest ways of moving into an engaged (yes, exciting) life of prayer is to view this spiritual discipline as a primary means of advancing God's holy purpose.
James 5:16 says, "The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much" (NKJV). While the appropriate focus is on our position in Christ (righteous), I think it is wise to appreciate the issue of fervency. In other words, prayer that extends the boundaries of God's intentions, invades the impossible of human circumstances or lays claim to "His kingdom come," is prayer that is certainly other than passive.
You'll find that kind of praying when people face God-sized problems that require more than well-wishing or preferred outcomes. So, if your prayer life has lost its excitement, then hold on, because life will eventually come at you in such a way that you'll find yourself banging on heaven's door for intervention or rescue.
But perhaps that's the point. Instead of waiting for pain or problems to arrive, why not fire up your prayer life by taking on God's purposes being advanced in those around you? You'll find there are enough impossible situations close at hand to turn you into a prayer warrior.
You'll find God more than willing to empower you with His Spirit to move you in this kind of prayer, and your mantra will certainly change as well: "It's a new day, it's a new dawn, and it's a new life!"
Answered by: Dennis W. Easter, senior pastor of Portland Foursquare Church in Oregon. If you have a question for "Your Questions," contact us. Mention that it is for "Your Questions" consideration.