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July 27, 2009

Week 8: Expectant Prayer

Be sure you're prepared to help your group tackle this vital topic.


My three-year-old son says the same prayer every night before he goes to bed: "Thank you, God, as this day ends, for my family and my friends. Taking time to sit and pray, thank you, God, for this great day." He learned it from a Christian DVD he used to watch every day, and it stuck.

On the one hand, it's exciting that my son is already getting into the practice of regular communication with God. On the other hand, the danger exists that prayer is already becoming "just words" to him—just something he says every night before he goes to bed.

That tension is at the heart of the Christian experience with prayer. It's a huge and holy thing, but also an everyday thing. And that means it's a great topic for this week's group discussion. Let's dig in.

Teaching Points
This discussion question listed in the study material could really get things going: "Have you ever heard a miraculous story and questioned its credibility?" That's sure to get some people talking, but be sure as the leader to make sure the conversation stays positive.

If you don't want to risk group members beginning to bash other people, you might want to just stick with a good icebreaker. (We recommended a couple in the recent Dot Com(unity) newsletter.)

I'm a big fan of all three teaching points this week, and I can't think of one that seems more important than the others. As you go through this study, what area do you think your group will be most interested in: prayer advancing God's glory, hearing God's voice, or testing what we hear?

posted by Sam O'Neal on July 27, 2009 5:45 AM

Related Tags: Dot Com(unity), Prayer


hearing God's voice

Prayer advancing God's glory. My problem though is how people define "advancing God's glory". Too often I think we have a way of defining success in the Church and if it doesn't fit that preconceived notion, then we think we aren't accomplishing God's will.

I think you've got a good point, Pat. But then, do we not define success at all?

We pray and ask God to define success for us and then ask Him also for the patience so that we don't circumvent His will as HE brings to pass what He intends for us.

Great response Pat. Prayer brings us into a relationship with God. Who are we to judge the success if we are truly doing God's will. I like the word Discernment. It covers all three of the topics and would truly teach us to be faithful to the will of God.

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