I have been learning a lot about prayer since attending CRC & especially since becoming a part of the Corporate Prayer Team. I know I still have a lot to learn - a lot - but, I am so glad to be able to share with those that asked and, well, the rest of you (if you so choose to continue reading).
Prayer is a way to communicate & build your relationship with God. It is not the time for you to be saying "I need", "I want"... Sure there may occasionally be times where you can address your needs in prayer to God but, He all ready knows our needs. During one of our classes a couple years ago, the teacher said "it's ok to ask God once. Anything after that and you are begging. Change the way you pray after that & thank Him for what you are expecting/needing."
For example, you are in need of healing. Go to God with that need one time and then, any other time you feel the need to pray about it, thank Him for providing for that need.Thank Him that you are healed, that He is the great physician and His word says that He will heal us of our sickness, disease and infirmities.
But, what I have been learning most is corporate prayer. Praying for the corporate body and for the restoration of God's honor and power. Most people pray because there's a crisis. That should not be the only time we pray. We want to pray with a pre-emptive strike against the things that can come to block God from moving.
Here's a bit from a prayer outline I prayed a few weeks ago as an example of how we are learning to pray.
"We know tha tYou are giving us new hearts and so, we expose ourselves to You now, Lord, & allow You to empower us. Purify our hearts! Refine us with Your fire! Build our character. Let our hearts be stirred by noble themes & not of the unsavory. Give us undivided hearts, God and forgive us for tainting Your precious, holy name through our poor character & our disobedience. We choose this night, this moment, to pour out our hearts unto You & ask that You would pour out Your spirit unto us that we can shed these filthy rags and take on Your character."
It's a constant learning curve and I am loving the fact that I am allowed to be a part of it. Had a much nicer, more elaborate post but lost it. Sorry