Do We Pray With This Attitude?

We are two months into 2021, and as a church, we are seeking God in prayer with greater commitment and consistency than perhaps ever before in our history! We see a spiritual hunger in both believers and spiritual seekers. We are processing the deep disappointments and discouragements while simultaneously experiencing the deep love of God in the Gospel.

As we continue to move forward, I sense that God is asking us to add something to our prayers and our Christian journey. I see this “something” in Ephesians 3:20-21, which I have been praying over our church. Look at Paul’s words and consider the tone, the attitude, and the mindset these words are meant to produce:

Now to Him who is able to do above and beyond all that we ask or think… (v. 20a)

God wants His people to be expectant, to have holy anticipation, and to be eager for what He can do.

I know for me, it is easy to start just going through the motions in my faith, with my family, in my work, and in my routines. I also understand that 2020 and life, in general, can be hard on hope and anticipation. However, I see in these verses that holy anticipation and active expectation are part of faith and a product of grasping how much God loves us (see Ephesians 3:17-19).

Reflect for a moment on how we start our days, how we engage in prayer, how we read our Bibles, how we participate in corporate worship, and how we hear the Word of God taught. Do we genuinely expect God to speak, to move, to reveal Himself?

Is reading and listening to God’s Word more of a duty or a delight?

Are we filled with anticipation that should come with seeking the God Who promised we would find Him (Jeremiah 29:13)?

One of the hallmarks and perhaps even precursors to revival is a thirst and appetite for God. People longing, hoping and expecting for the living God. When this is present, we are not opening our Bibles, praying, and listening to sermons merely to discharge a duty but rather to satisfy an appetite and quench a thirst.

As a deer longs for flowing streams,
so I long for you, God.
I thirst for God, the living God.
{Psalm 42:1-2}

This week our church is holding our second Daniel Day (https://rockbridge.cc/prayer/) where we are intentionally pursuing God in fasting (from something) and in prayer. Let’s lean into Ephesians 3:20 and engage with expectation.

This weekend we are going to start a new series called “Half Full” on having holy hope, joy, and positivity … even while living in a world where those things seem fleeting and temporary at best. But holy anticipation is what makes the difference between a half-empty and half-full life!

Here are a few steps that might help raise our active expectation in the God Who promises more than we can ask or think.

  1. Ask God for help.

God knows we are easily distracted, often deceived, and in need of His grace and mercy. So ask God to help you set your mind on things above (Colossians 3:1-2).

  1. The greatest gift, highest honor, and best reward God can give is Himself. Make Him your highest ambition and never be disappointed and be forever satisfied!

We are disappointed because we often hope in the wrong things or misunderstand what God has promised.

What if we all started opening our Bibles with this prayer, “God, meet with me through Your Word. Show me more of Yourself!”

What if we all participated in church services with this attitude, “God, I’m here for You. I want to see You more clearly, submit to You more readily, and enjoy You more completely.”

  1. Reflect on this quote:

“We can build the altar, but God must send the fire.”

The altar where we become “living sacrifices” ready for God (see Romans 12:1).Let our altar be one of holy anticipation because God LOVES to give Himself to people positioned and prepared to receive Him … Oh, the BEST IS YET TO COME!!!!!!!!!

About Matt Evans

Matt Evans hand lifted at Rock Bridge Community Church_res (4)

Matt Evans is the Founding and Lead Pastor of Rock Bridge Community Church in Dalton, Georgia. Matt and his wife, Beth, grew up in the Dalton area and saw the need for a church that would reach the lost, broken, de-churched, and spiritually wounded. 

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