In my almost 30 years, I’ve learned that I am pretty good at several things.
I can make a mean batch of homemade
out of the box cupcakes with real homemade icing. I even use a fancy bag to ice them and make them all kinds of pretty. I can purge with the best of them. When I get in one of my oh my goodness…junk is taking over our home kind of moods, then nothing is safe. Clothes, toys, paper, dishes…you name it. If it hasn’t been used within the last three weeks, I’m likely to toss it or donate it. I’m optimistic. Like, borderline obnoxious optimistic. I’m not the one to call if you want to mope and drown in your misery. Because I can generally find an upside to any situation. The exception being funerals and death. I’m very, very grief stricken for people when they lose a loved one. I feel things very deeply.
With each good quality comes the bad.
I’m one of the most impatient people you will ever meet. I don’t like to wait. When I want something, I want it right then. And that’s in all aspects of life. With my kids, with my husband, with business, with God…if it’s something I have my heart on, then I tend to believe that I’m ready for it right at that very moment. Which means that in some ways I tend to be a bit impulsive. I’ve gotten myself into trouble in the past by jumping on something (purchases, decisions, etc.) that I really should have waited on. I’m tender-hearted and feel things deeply. This isn’t something that’s always bad but I believe that I hurt deeper in some ways than other people do.
I’m also terrible at prayer.
I don’t mean like I don’t know how to pray. I mean in the, “I don’t always do it…go days and days and weeks at the time without speaking to God” kind of way. That is not at all something that I am proud of. But, if I was a betting woman, I would be willing to wager a significant bet that nine out of 10 of you reading this were in the same boat.
I’d also be willing to bet that the same nine out of 10 of you that were struggling with not only praying daily, but even acknowledging God, were struggling significantly in some area of your life. And I know that because up until recently when I made the intentional and very, very deliberate decision to change that aspect of my life, that I was struggling significantly, too.
Prayer changes everything, guys.
And I do mean everything.
I am a big, big fan of every film that the Kendrick Brothers have ever made. Facing the Giants is one we have watched time and time again with our boys; Noah especially who loves football. Fireproof challenged my marriage and Courageous led me into a role of more intentional (though still far from perfect) role as a parent.
But despite all of that…despite whatever amount of faith that I have, I was still spiritually dry until I made a deliberate decision to start praying specifically for my family and for others.
I’ve been doing this intentional prayer strategy for only a mere two weeks. And I’ve seen prayers answered already.
- After months of debating back and forth on what he wanted to do with his life…stay in the military for an extended period of time or get out and do something else my husband has finally found his calling….
- Our oldest son, who has been struggling significantly with obedience and attitude issues, had began to make a very noticeable change and turnaround in his demeanor…
- Our youngest, who has continued to struggle with sound sleep and continuous hours of sleep, has finally started sleeping in seven and eight hour increments…
- My patience level has increased so much that even our six year old has noticed…
I have started praying very big, very BOLD prayers for myself, my ministry, my family and our future. Not to mention all of YOU. With those big, bold prayers, God has brought some big, BOLD answers and some exciting promises for things that are yet to come for our family.
It wasn’t until I started feeling the conviction of my lack of prayer life, that I realized something…
If I’m not praying intentionally over my husband, my marriage, my children and our lives, then who is?
That’s what has inspired me to start a prayer binder (photos mine coming soon); led me to dive head first into a handful of books devoted to topical, specific prayer (My favorites right now are The Power of a Praying Wife by Stormie Omartian and Praying for Boys by Brooke McGlothlin), and inspired me to start what I’m calling the #BigBoldPrayerMovement right her on this little blog. For the next year, I’m going to be devoting myself to learning to pray the way God has always wanted us to through my own personal Bible Study and through doing studies right here on my Blog with you guys.
The first book that we are going to be tackling together (if you’re up for the task and are ready to change your homes and your lives with the Power of Prayer), is Fervent by Priscilla Shirer. This is the book she wrote inspired by the new movie War Room coming out on August 28. I am seriously so, so excited about this book. I’ve gotten started on the first little bit of it to help me lay out a game plan for leading this study here and I am already so beyond challenged (in the best way possible) and ready to get started praying the prayers we would pray if we actually believed God was listening. He is listening, friends. And he wants to hear from you. If you’re ready and willing to embark on this journey with me, here’s the reading plan for our Fervent study:
- Week One: August 17-August 23 (pages 1-38 // This means War + Strategy One)
- Week Two: August 24-August 30 (pages 39-54 // Strategy Two)
- Week Three: August 31-September 6 (pages 55-70 // Strategy Three)
- Week Four: September 7-September 13 (pages 71-92 // Strategy Four)
- Week Five: September 14-September 20 (pages 93-104 // Strategy Five)
- Week Six: September 21-September 27 (pages 105-118 // Strategy Six)
- Week Seven: September 28-October 4 (pages 119-132 // Strategy Seven)
- Week Eight: October 5-October 11 (pages 133-150 // Strategy Eight)
- Week Nine: October 12-October 18 (pages 151-168 // Strategy Nine)
- Week Ten: October 19-October 25 (pages 169-182 // Strategy Ten)
- Week 11: October 26-October 30 (pages 183-190 // Amen)
I could have combined this into a much faster study, but I really want people to stick with this. I want you guys to walk this journey with me and make it through this entire book. The very first week is going to be the most reading of the whole study (which is why I’m posting this now so if you snag the book early, you can get a jump start). I think it’s so important to take this study slow that way it sinks in and allows us to put these methods into practice as we power through. I’ll be posting an “reminder” type post on Monday of each week along with a free printable or the like the will coordinate with what we’ll be reading during the week and then a second blog post on Friday with a personal insight on what I gained from the reading during the week and what I took away from it (and maybe another free goodie, who knows).
I’ve also started a virtual prayer wall. I’m always accepting prayer requests here, but as a way to unite this community, I’m going to be posting the requests that I’m sent to the public wall so that others here can pray for you. The prayer request form is not on that requires your name or email address. You don’t have to include either and I’ve included a drop down box asking whether you prefer your prayer request to remain anonymous on the prayer wall. I hope you guys will utilize it and allow me, and all of my friends here following this journey with me, to pray for you.
Are you joining me on this journey of prayer? Will you be taking part in the study? Leave a comment and let me know! I can’t wait to get started with you!
If you would like to take part in this study but can not afford a book, please, please don’t let that stop you! I’d be more than happy to send you a copy for free if you will drop me an email. I assure you that the cost of the book is in no way a concern and I want EVERYONE to join in!