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Keep on Praying

“And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.” —Ephesians 6:18

“How can I pray for you?”

It is not unusual for a Christian saint to ask this question. The conversation usually begins with a simple, “How are you doing?” followed by the answer being, more likely than not, something troublesome in the person’s life. The believing friend then will respond with, “How can I pray for you?” or “How can I pray for you in this situation?” or “How can I pray for your family member/friend?” Then, hopefully, we do pray.

Many prayers are offered up to God during wartime. This will be the first devotional in a series of four dedicated to prayer. For now, we have settled into a devotional posting-schedule for Excellent or Praiseworthy of Monday and Thursday. Hopefully, the intervening period allows you time to share the questions with your spouse, or just to ponder what is written. Certainly we would love to have your comments about what is helpful to you.

We recently asked our local chaplains, “How can we pray for you as you prepare for deployment?” The answers to our question were varied, tender, and powerful—all at the same time. They introduced us to the printed “prayer card” with the chaplain’s picture, mailing address, deployment dates, and prayer requests. I have five such cards in front of me; one from a Navy chaplain, one from an Army chaplain, two from Air Force chaplains, and one from a National Guard chaplain. We consider it a great privilege to pray for these devoted servants.

One of the greatest devotional writers of all times also ministered spiritually to soldiers as a YMCA chaplain. Oswald Chambers, author of the well-known My Utmost for His Highest was serving the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force in Cairo, Egypt, during World War I when he died of complications from appendicitis in 1917. “Chambers ministered to those who faced the terrors of the First World War. He was truly ‘in the full blaze of the intellectual problems and actual difficulties of the times in which we live.’ . . . He often spoke of the underlying tragedy of human life, yet also imparted the overshadowing hope of the message of Jesus Christ.” — Introduction to My Utmost Devotional Bible, p. 9.

Who is Jesus Christ? And what is His message? Certainly it would make sense to know this God to whom you are praying. A good summary can be found in the Four Spiritual Laws booklet published by Campus Crusade for Christ:

  1. “God loves you and created you to know Him personally. He has a wonderful plan for your life.
  2. People are sinful and separated from God, so we cannot know Him personally or experience His love and plan.
  3. Jesus Christ is God’s only provision for our sin. Through Him alone we can know God personally and experience God’s love and plan.
  4. We must individually receive Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord; then we can know God personally and experience His love and plan.”

If that is a message that you are ready to take to heart, then PRAY something like this:

“Lord Jesus, I want to know You personally. Thank You for dying on the cross for my sins. I open the door of my life and receive You as my Savior and Lord. Thank You for forgiving me of my sins and giving me eternal life. Take control of the throne of my life. Make me the kind of person You want me to be.” If you have prayed that prayer, and you want to know more, click on one of the following websites:

GodLovesSoldiers.com

GodLovesMarines.com

GodLovesSailors.com

GodLovesAirmen.com

GodLovesCoastGuardsmen.com

Our prayer for you is “that out of His glorious riches He may strengthen you with power through His Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith.” — Ephesians 3:16-17

Questions to Share:

1. Do you have a favorite time to pray or a place to pray?

2. Who do you pray for most often?

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