Prayer 556 - Week 5, Friday
Friday - Audacious Prayers
Audacious is described as "showing a willingness to take surprisingly bold risks." In the passage we're reading this morning, Jesus uses this word in a parable to teach the disciples about prayer.
Luke 11: 5-10
Then Jesus said to them,
“Suppose you have a friend, and you go to him at midnight and say,
‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread; a friend of mine on a journey has come to me, and I have no food to offer him.’
And suppose the one inside answers, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is already locked, and my children and I are in bed. I can’t get up and give you anything.’
I tell you, even though he will not get up and give you the bread because of friendship,
yet because of your shameless audacity he will surely get up and give you as much as you need.
So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.
For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.
Would you describe your prayers as audacious? Why or why not?
Has there ever been a season in your life where you prayed more boldly than you do now?
If there is something that holds you back from praying audaciously, tell God about it now.
Sometimes I think we're afraid to pray for things because we worry that God won't answer. But in this parable, the answer isn't up to us - our only job is to ask, seek, and knock with boldness.
All three are active words.
For the rest of your prayer time this morning, pray boldly. Ask. Seek. Knock. Don't do it anxious about the outcome. Just pray!
you command me to ask,
grant that I may receive what you give.
You have told me to seek,
let me be happy in finding.
You have bidden me to knock,
I pray, open for me.
Graciously direct and govern all my thoughts and actions,
that, for the future,
I may serve you
and entirely devote myself to obeying you.
and draw me to yourself,
that I may henceforth be yours
by obedience and love,
since I am already yours,
as your creature.
Yours, O Lord,
you live and reign forever and ever. Amen.
- Augustine of Hippo
Where have you seen God move in your life this week? Take a moment and name this, then give thanks.
What are you being purified of in this season? Take a moment to confess and ask God to continue his work in you.
After you’ve reflected on where you’ve been this week, invite God to go with you into the week ahead.
I really love this translation of this passage-- is it the Message? I feel like "shameless audacity" is a really inspiring term. It implies asking for something that's almost unreasonable, that the person asked isn't likely to give--but just in case he happens to have three loaves of bread left from that day's baking, I'll ask anyway.
Historically, I've only prayed like this when I'm in a desperate situation, when I can't see the way God might possibly answer. This has been when I was literally stuck somewhere (a car broke down, stuck in China) or in desperate financial situations.
But recently, I haven't had those sorts of cars, and I've had roadside assistance. I had a similar stuck feeling at work a couple years ago, and my supervisor suggested working ten months. I haven't felt desperate in quite a while.
So this devotional and this translation of this passage is really making me think bigger! I'm praying for audacious things, and praying that I can leave the distraction of my own inadequacy behind.
Audacious praying! I believe my prayers for revival through the years have been the most audacious. I yearn to see a Pentecost revival-a Great Awakening! I Know God has blessed In so many ways and I am grateful. I remember going to Toronto and Pensacola and bathing in the joy as I saw people coming to the Lord. I want to see that happen among us. Pastor Wendell used to talk of a “Kingdom mentality”. While I would like it to happen at UCC, I would love to see it in every Church-throughout the city-throughout the region and by God’s grace throughout the world. I yearn for people to hunger and thirst for righteousness and justice FOR JESUS!!!! I am filled with hope as I think of Daniel and Zachariah who were both told, “Your prayers have been heard”. In both cases, the answer had been delayed. In Daniels’s case, it was spiritual warfare. In Zachariah’s case, it was waiting for the appointed time. In my dreams, I have seen revival. I continue to cry out in this audacious prayer, “More Lord”.
I have always been confused by this passage. I did not understand what it meant to pray audaciously. I wondered why the person would not get the bread because it was a friend, but it seemed like he would get the bread because the friend was nagging him. I guess I did not understand the concept of praying audaciously. In thinking about this concept, I think the thing I have prayed most Audaciously would be for the salvation of my family. I have never really thought of it in that term, but have felt that maybe I was “nagging“ the Lord rather than “ twisting his arm“. I did not feel that I had the right to approach the Lord “ audaciously”. I think that when I pray about the salvation of my family, I will approach the Lord differently now that I have read the comments regarding this passage. It has made me think about continuing to pray.
How inspiring! My prayers recently have focused on finding faithful and inspiring people who will accept me and Julia and to journey with us in hope and prayer! Until now, here with all of you, I’ve not had this in years! This week, God has given me supportive people for my faith journey. You’re filling my empty spirit with Hope. I’m being purified of my self-doubt and my vengeful thoughts of past wrongs and deceit. He’s giving me the confidence to reach out to create an inclusive community program for the next chapter in my journey with Julia that can include her older brother, Brian, as he seeks to be closer in spirit and location to us. Hearing this verse presented with idea of Audacious Prayer gives me the confidence to ask for help, seek the wisdom I need to step out in faith and to knock on the doors that Jesus reveals to me. Amen!