Bible Reading: Ephesians 6:10-20
“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” [Ephesians 6:18]
In his wonderful little book, “Talking About Prayer,” Richard Bewes writes, “Prayer is such an education! We go on learning about it all of our lives. We never reach the point when we can say, ‘I’ve got it licked.’ Never.” I think that when Paul said that we are to pray all kinds of prayers he was indicating a journey of discovery about prayer.
The acronym A-C-T-S helps us to remember four different kinds of prayer.
A stands for adoration!
Here is the heart of worship in prayer – to adore God. The word “adore” or “adoration” is not found in most translations of the Bible, although in the Message Bible the word “adore” is found in Psalm 22:23. It replaces “revere” [NIV] or “fear” [NKJV]. Psalm 45 is a wedding song, and the bride honours the King [NIV] but in the Message Bible that word honour is translated as “adore.” The word has the meaning of “to bow down,” “honour,” and “to revere!”
The dictionary definition of the word adore is “to worship” “to love intensely.”
A key part of worship or adoration is to express praise to God and to express our love to Him. The hymn writers regularly use the word “adore,” as worship to God, and in fact, the first section of the 1932 edition of the Methodist Hymn Book is entitled “Adoration and Worship.” One of our greatest hymns is the Christmas carol with the chorus, “O come let us adore Him.” The Westminster Catechism says, “Man’s chief end is to worship God and to enjoy Him forever.” God does not need our worship, but has given it to us for our benefit. Worship and adoration leads us into God’s presence!
The heart of true worship is to focus totally on God, to honour and adore Him. When did you last take time to just focus on Him and tell Him how much you love Him? As the hymn writer puts it, “Lost in wonder, love and praise.”
1. Why do you think that it is always good to begin times of prayer, both as individuals, and as a community with worship and adoration of God?
2. Read Psalm 145. There are several statements that begin with the words “The Lord …” [verses 8,9,13b,14,17]. When completed what do each of these statements say about God? Does this make you want to worship Him?
3. Will you take ten minutes today, to forget about yourself, and to just focus on the greatness of God, bow down and worship Him and tell Him that you love Him?