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Grace Union Church

Deepening Prayer

Carving out spaces in your life, and allowing God to fill them with his presence.

I. Deepening Prayer is Internally Focused, Resting Prayer.

* The deeper I dig the holes, and the more holes I dig, the more of his presence my life will contain.

2 Timothy 2:4
No one serving as a soldier gets entangled in civilian affairs, but rather tries to please his commanding officer.

* Paul was teaching Timothy that a core skill he needed to develop was to LIVE within the Kingdom of God even though he EXISTED in the Kingdom of the World.


II. Continual Prayer: Spontaneous, Interspersed Prayers.

* Sometimes we have trouble drawing into spontaneous prayer because we cannot think of something we want to ask for. Butthis type of prayer is more about spending a moment soaking in the Atmosphere of his Presence than about getting anythingfrom him.
* These kinds of prayers don't always feel significant in the moment, but the impact is Cumulative.
* These consistently interspersed momentary connections with God will keep the power and presence of the Holy Spirit from drying up in your life.


III. Another form of Deepening Prayer: Praying in the Spirit.

Ephesians 6:18
Pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.

* This scripture is talking about 2 things:
  - Spirit led prayers.
  - Spirit uttered prayers.

A. Spirit Led Prayer
* IMAGINE: You have a CB Radio and on some frequency out there, there is an open line of communication between the Holy Spirit and God the Father.
  - Praying in the spirit is about quieting background static and tuning in to find the station.
  - It is sensing the Focus of the Holy Spirit as he communicates with God the Father for situations around you.
- Then you add your voice to that of the Spirit in Petitioning the Father. In doing so you are praying the perfect will and wisdom of God.

B. Spirit Uttered Prayer
* The Holy Spirit will also pray through us in words and groans that we don't understand.

Romans 8:26-27
26 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.
27 And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.

1 Corinthians 14:2,4
2 For anyone who speaks in a tongue does not speak to people but to God. Indeed no one understands them, but they utter mysteries by the Spirit
4 Anyone who speaks in a tongue edifies themselves, but the one who prophecies edifies the church.

* The mystery as Paul explains it:
- The Holy Spirit utters prayers and mysteries through people in languages and sounds they don't comprehend.
- The act of speaking or praying in Tongues is not aimed at people, but at God himself.

C. With either method, the powerful and mysterious thing is that we don't understand what we are communicating.
* But if we are willing to trust God in things that we don't fully understand, we can PRAY THE PERFECT WILL AND DESIRE OF
GOD IN EVERY SITUATION.


IV. Final Form of Deepening Prayer: Meditating on God’s Word.

Psalm 1:1-3
1 Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers,
2 but whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on his law day and night.
3 That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither — whatever they do prospers.

A. Christian meditation is fundamentally different than Eastern Meditation.
* Christian meditation is deliberately filling your mind and heart with something.
* Eastern meditation is emptying your mind.
  - The goal of Christian meditation is further Attachment.
  - The goal of Eastern Meditation is detachment.

B. Example of a Good Scripture to Meditate on:

Psalm 18:1-3
1 I love you, Lord, my strength.
2 The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
3 I called to the Lord, who is worthy of praise, and I have been saved from my enemies.


V. Closing: A key theological principle of Christianity is that God does not dwell in temples, churches, or architecture.

* WE ARE THE TEMPLE OF THE HOLY SPIRIT.

* How many pools will you dig out? How deeply will you dig them?

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