THE BIG IDEA:
Prayer is talking to God and trusting in him. Without prayer it is difficult to grow in a relationship with God.
Because of lack of understanding, worry, or failure to take the time, we miss out on the benefits and joys of communicating with God.
Prayer is talking to God, just as if we were talking to one of our friends on the phone.
Begin to seek time alone with God each day to talk with God through prayer, listen to him, and learn to know and trust him in a deeper way.
- What I want the group to know and understand: Prayer is talking to God and listening to his answer. Without prayer it is difficult to grow in a relationship with God.
- What I want the group to experience: The great joy and privilege of communicating with God through prayer.
- How I want the group to respond: To begin to make prayer and reliance on God a regular part of our lives.
TIPS AND IDEAS
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Shayla’s stomach is tied up in knots. Her dad is sick and has been out of work for the past several months. She has a big project due next week. And she’s wondering if she’ll be invited to the party next week. To top it off, it seems like her little brother is always nagging her and giving her a hard time. Sometimes it feels like a mountain of stress is weighing on her heart. One of her friends said she should pray and give her problems to God, but she doesn’t know how she would begin to do that. In what ways can you relate to Shayla’s experience?
1. Read Philippians 4:6-7. What does God tell us to do in verse 6? What does he say not to do?
He says we should bring our requests about every issue to God through prayer and with thanksgiving. He tells us to not be anxious about anything.
2. Why do you think God tells us not to be anxious about anything?
Allow the group to discuss. God loves us, cares for us, and is bigger than any of my problems. He wants us to bring our concerns to him so that he can do something about them. Anxiety is essentially talking to yourself about your problems, and that doesn’t solve anything.
3. Why do you think God wants us to pray about everything, not just “big” things? Allow the group to discuss. He loves us, cares about all the details of our lives, and wants to show his love and care in every part of our lives, whether big or small.
4. Why do you think God wants us to offer our prayers with thanksgiving?
Allow the group to discuss. Thanking God declares that he’s good and in control of all our situations, even the hard and painful ones.
5. What does God promise as we say “no” to anxiety and come to him about everything in prayer with thanksgiving?
He promises that his supernatural peace will guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
6. Read Luke 5:15-16. Even though Jesus was the Son of God, why do you think he often took time to pray?
Allow the group to discuss. Jesus had an eternal relationship with God, and prayer cultivated that relationship.
7. It is amazing to be able to talk to the God of the universe whenever we want, so why is prayer sometimes hard to do? Is it worth it?
Allow the group to discuss. Prayer is well worth it. The God of the universe loves me and wants to answer my prayers.
8. What’s the biggest thing happening in your life right now that you need to stop worrying about about and bring to God with prayer and thanksgiving?
Allow the group to discuss.
9. Writing your prayers down is a great way to remember what to pray for and to see how God has answered your prayers over time. Start a prayer list right now. Write down three things you want to start praying for this week, then gather together as a group and pray.
Give your students some time to write down some prayer requests. If the group is uncomfortable with this, you could lead them through it. At the end, pray together. You can find some creative ideas for group prayer in our IDEA BOX section at thrivestudies.com/prayer-leader
What ideas do you have that could improve this study? Are there creative things you do to bring this topic home to your students? Please share with the community clicking the FEEDBACK button or leaving a comment below.