Nehemiah's Prayer: Connecting With God
And I said, “O Lord God of heaven, the great and awesome God who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments, let your ear be attentive and your eyes open, to hear the prayer of your servant that I now pray before you day and night for the people of Israel your servants.. — Nehemiah 1:5-6
Over the next few days, we will dive a little deeper into the four C.O.R.E. elements of Nehemiah's prayer.
- Connecting With God.
- Owning Our Sin.
- Recalling God’s Faithfulness.
- Entrusting Our Plans.
Nehemiah’s prayer begins with him making a Connection with God. It's a proclamation of three powerful things. First, God's awesomeness. Second, God's covenant. Third, God's love. This is the focus of his praise. In other words, he praises God before he asks him for a single thing.
We might be prone to pass over this initial connection, but don't dismiss the effect of these three things prayed daily over months. Just think how a prayer started this way repeatedly would have altered his heart, mind, and soul about the reach of God's capabilities, promises, and compassion. Like us, I assume there were times Nehemiah questioned one or many of these things. Thus, these three proclamations probably had moments that they became truths he preached to the untruths burning deep within his soul.
This is where every prayer should begin for the leader. It should start with us presenting our ever-changing hearts, minds, and souls to the unchanging God. So try it today. Ask God for the one thing you wrote down yesterday. But before you ask him, spend just a few minutes in praise. Praise his name first. I put a song for you below. Listen to it. Preach it to your soul. Connect with God and his awesomeness, promises, and love. Then, once the song is done, ask God for that one thing.
Reflect on your own prayer life. How often do you start your prayers with a focus on God's attributes, such as His awesomeness, covenant, and love, as Nehemiah did?
How might consciously incorporating these elements of praise and acknowledgment change the nature and experience of your prayers?
Consider a challenging situation or decision you are currently facing. How can you apply Nehemiah's "Connecting With God" approach in your prayer regarding this situation?
Discuss or reflect on how shifting your focus in prayer to these elements might alter your perspective and emotional state regarding the challenge.
DO THIS: Play the song below, then pray.
PRAY THIS: Father, I acknowledge Your magnificent greatness, Your faithful covenant, and Your unending love as I lay my heart open before You; guide me in my journey, aligning my thoughts, actions, and desires with Your divine will and purpose. Amen.
PLAY THIS: This Is Our God.
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