“And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints. Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel.” Ephesians 6:18-19

Let’s Talk 

Have you ever tried to put together a piece of furniture from Ikea? If not, give it a try because you will gain a whole new perspective on patience.
One year when I moved into a new apartment I decided it would be smart (and cheap) to buy a bunch of furniture from Ikea. This could have possibly been the dumbest decision of my life.
I spent hours trying to put together pieces, and even breaking a table leg because apparently, I am too strong (or possibly too impatient) in trying to put pieces together.
I should have spent a few extra dollars and gone with pre-assembled furniture, but instead, I took it upon myself to build these intense furnishings.
This is sometimes how I am in my prayer life. Instead of just talking to God like He is a friend, I try to piece together big and colorful sentences to talk to Him. Instead of just sitting down, and asking for forgiveness, I beat around the bush and make the process drawn out and painful.
I compare it to assembling furniture from Ikea because during that process I spent hours trying to fit pieces together and make them look good.
Prayer is not supposed to look good! We are not called to dress it up and show it off. No, God gave us the gift of prayer so that we could get to know Him better.
Today I want you to stop trying to make prayer into an elaborate assembly and start making it about a relationship. Like I mentioned in the last two days, there are 3 aspects of prayer that have strengthened my relationship with God.
1) Praises
2) Repentance
3) Requests
Prayer requests are the most frequent thing I talk to God about. Don’t ever hesitate in asking God for something, because He already knows the contents of your heart.
He already knows our hearts, but He gives us the gift of prayer so that we get to know His. 
I keep track of my prayer requests because I honestly have a pretty bad memory. Not everyone needs to write down their prayers, but it has helped me tremendously.
Each day I work through a list of personal requests, friends requests, and a different country each day.
Some days my prayers are quick. Some days they are long. Sometimes I pray throughout the day, other days I only pray once.
Guess what though? I’m the only one keeping score.
God doesn’t sit down at the end of each week and say “Ok, hmmm. Lindsay only prayer 4 times this week, yikes!”
No, He doesn’t keep track, but He wants to hear from us because He knows how much a prayer relationship with Him can change our lives.
Psalm 34:15 reminds us of the truth, The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and his ears are attentive to their cry.”
Philippians 4:6 reminds us: “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything; tell God your needs, and don’t forget to thank him for his answers.” 
John reminds us in 1 John 5:14 that we should have confidence in approaching God. “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.” 
Paul tells us in Ephesian 6:8 that we should pray to God through ALL things. “And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.”
Jeremiah 29:12 reminds us that the Lord always hears our prayers. “Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.” 
The Bible is filled with dozens and dozens of Bible verses on prayer and the importance it holds for us.
We can pray anywhere and at any time. No matter the circumstances, God will always hear you.
“Which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!” Matthew 7:9–11
God knows you better than anyone else in the world. He is not going to give you a stone or a serpent when you’re hungry, He is going to give you what He knows you need.
If you already have a great prayer life, then that’s awesome! If you want to dive into prayer and work on your relationship with God, then try praying through the three items I mentioned this week.
1) Praises
2) Repentance
3) Requests
You can read “Learning To Ask For Forgiveness Through Prayer” from yesterday HERE

Thoughts For The Day

Make a list this morning of “requests” you have for God. Whether this is for healing, restoration, or growth, pray it out!

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