Ask God to orient or reorient you to Himself. Confess any known sin. Thank Him for His forgiveness. Be still and reflect on Jesus and His sacrifice for you. Ask the Holy Spirit to open your heart and mind to God’s Word. Pray for others in your life that they, too, would know and love God today.
“Devote yourselves to prayer with an alert mind and a thankful heart.”
You can’t underestimate the power of prayer! I’ve always thought it interesting to see how an attitude of prayer can turn a heart into one filled with thankfulness and gratitude. I think Paul probably thought the same way too. He never seemed to tire of urging believers to be diligent in their prayer life.
There is a great deal of mystery in connection with the whole subject of prayer; many questions which cannot be answered. The best attitude for the Christian is not to seek to analyze, dissect, or understand prayer’s deeper mysteries. The best approach we can take is to keep praying in simple faith, casting aside our intellectual doubts—the things that fuel anxiety.
Not only are we to continue earnestly in prayer, but we are also to be observant in it. Think of the Lord Jesus’s request to the disciples in the garden of Gethsemane when He said “Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation.” They were not vigilant, so they fell sound asleep.
If we’re not on guard and alert as we move into the holiday season, we may be lulled to sleep. The problem with being lulled to sleep is that when we wake up, we’ll already be caught up in all the commotion. We end up tumbling in the waves it creates rather than riding on the waves. This isn’t how we’re to live; we’re to engage the things before us, and this takes effort.
We’re not just to be alert in our prayers; we’re also to be grateful and to have a thankful heart! Know this: that being thankful should always accompany prayer. It places a believer in the proper attitude before God.
You see our attitude—our willingness to not just go through the motions, but engage the different settings we find ourselves in—is a matter of our choosing what our minds focus on.
When it comes to living with gratitude today, will you choose to be thankful? The right place to start is by turning your attention to God. Will you choose today to put in the effort it will take to devote yourself to God through prayer? As you do, let gratefulness and gratitude for what Christ has done for you guide you.
*From what you have just read and considered: What is a personal implication/application for your life today?
(Personalize this prayer today; make it specific to the circumstances that face you.)
Ask God to lead you through His Spirit as you go through your day. Ask Him to bring to mind the truth of the Gospel and its implications for what you will encounter today. Tell Him “Yes” to His will and ask Him for His power and protection to live this “yes.” Ask God to create and reveal opportunities to proclaim the good news today. KEEP PRAYING THROUGHOUT YOUR DAY.