In Episode 10 I talked to BJ Penick and Cori Bridges on the topic of Prayer. BJ lives in Oklahoma with her husband Bud. They have been married 41 years and have 3 sons, 2 daughters (in-law) and 7 grandchildren. When they are not busy being with their family, BJ Penick is the owner of a Team Development business that uses Experiential Learning, a kinesthetic style of team interactions that provide highly effective transformations of individuals within a team. Her expertise is in communication, problem-solving, relationship building and self-awareness. Cori lives in Greenville, TX and works as an Industrial Engineer. She also loves volunteering as a youth leader in her church and I'm thankful to call her one of my best friends.
In this first part on prayer we discuss what prayer is and its purpose. We also talk about if there's a right or wrong way to pray, praying out loud, and what can hinder our prayers.
What is Prayer? - Communication with God - you can’t have a relationship at all without communication?
What is the purpose of prayer? - It is what builds our relationship with God; Prayer helps focus your mindset and even change your mindset; It changes focus externally to others and to God; Dump your cares on the Lord - “Anything that concerns you, concerns him”; Psalm 6:6 - “I am weary with my moaning; every night I flood my bed with tears; I drench my couch with my weeping.”
Is there a right way and a wrong way to pray? - You can pray anywhere, at any time, in any position; "Thinking can be powerless, but prayer is powerful"; Journaling can help focus your prayers; Praying from certain positions (like on your knees) can humble you; Matthew 6 - not being showy in prayer; The power of agreement in prayer - praying in groups (where two or more are gathered - Matthew 18:20); Four steps of prayer: Praise, Confession, Thanksgiving, Intercession (from the Lord’s prayer); Praying through the attributes of God; 2 Chronicles 7:14 - "if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land."
What about people who don’t like praying out loud - "Get over it" and humble yourself; Beware that you’re not hindering someone else’s prayer life, but at the same time, just do it - it can really edify the body; Being a perfectionist can get in the way, but “God just wants to hear your heart, and you really have to set aside what others are thinking of you and that that it’s about your relationship with God.”; Luke 11:1 says teach us to pray (not how to pray); Satan tries to silence our prayers because he knows how powerful they can be; Armor of God: Ephesians 6:18 - Prayer is also a spiritual weapon
Reasons we don’t pray - 1) Distorted view of the Father, 2) Genie in a bottle, 3) Does our prayer really matter; Ezekiel 22:30 - is there one who would stand in the gap?; Habakkuk - pray honestly, persistently, humbly, and expectantly
What are some things that can hinder our prayer? - James 1:6 - "But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind."; Matthew 6:7 - "And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words." - when you have a wrong agenda/motive; There’s nothing too big or bad for God to handle (David as an example); Lamenting is okay and is important; Habakkuk 2: 1 - "I will take my stand at my watchpost and station myself on the tower, and look out to see what he will say to me, and what I will answer concerning my complaint."; Distractions; Pray without ceasing - abiding; John 15: 7 - "If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you."; Sin (Isaiah 59:2, Psalm 55:18; 65:18) - If you don’t know what sin you’re dealing with - ask!; Unforgiveness (Mark 11:25; Matthew 5:23-24; 6:15); Proverbs 21:13 - closing ear to cry of poor; Don’t overlook the Lord’s Prayer; Ask God to align our hearts with his so ask for the things He desires; Prayers of a righteous man are powerful and effective (James 5:16)
Make sure you check back next week for Part 2!
Connect with BJ on social media for inspirational thoughts and micro-lessons on the concepts she teaches.
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