Praying with Others (18 February 2019)

Morning Encounter:

Introduction

Most, if not all, Christians would affirm the importance of private prayer. It is the primary way we engage in relationship with our Father God; a central part of the spiritual life. But does praying with others get the same priority? How many of us pray regularly with a friend, faithfully attend all our Church prayer meetings, show up at public prayer vigils?

The Christian life is not intended to be lived individually, and there are many places in the Bible where we see God take special pleasure in his people coming before him together. This week we will be looking at how and why we should pray with others.

Read:

Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”

So God created mankind in his own image,
    in the image of God he created them;
    male and female he created them.

(Genesis 1.26- 27/NIV)

Reflect:

Although the term ‘Trinity’ is never used explicitly in the Bible, we gain a clear picture of the nature of God as three persons- Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Even in our passage here in Genesis, a plural pronoun is used: us (1.26). God, in whose image we are made, is a community. We are designed to be in relationship with God and with each other (and with the created world). As we engage with God then, it makes sense for us to engage with God alongside other people.

Respond:

Take some time to assess your prayer habits. How often and in what settings do you pray with others? How could you build more communal prayer into your regular schedule?

 

Midday Meditation:

‘The Trinitarian persons are precisely not self-enclosed subjects who define themselves in separation from and opposition to others. Rather, in God “persons” are relational realities and are defined by inter-subjectivity, shared consciousness, faithful relationships, and the mutual giving and receiving of love.’

(Daniel Migliore, Faith Seeking Understanding)

 

Evening Reflection:

“Because Christian community is founded solely on Jesus Christ, it is a spiritual and not a psychic [merely human] reality. In this it differs absolutely from all other communities…Christian brotherhood is not an ideal that we must realise; it is rather a reality created by God in Christ in which we may participate. The more clearly we learn to recognize that the ground and strength and promise of all our fellowship is in Jesus Christ alone, the more serenely shall we think of our fellowship and pray and hope for it.”

(Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Life Together)

                          

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