WE ARE NOT isolated Christians. The New Testament was written to communities, new gatherings of Christians, who depended on one another in keeping this new faith alive. A prominent heresy in our time is that personal faith trumps everything else, that God speaks to the individual heart, that my own response to the gospel is all that matters. While the faith is personal, it is only so in relation to the historic faith, into which we are baptized, and the body of Christ — the church — in which we worship, study, pray, and serve. …
The first Christians prayed for one another, in Temple worship and in their homes. It happens even now. We pray with a family … as someone has died or as a youth mission team returns home safely or as someone goes into surgery. … We ask. We confess. We say thank you. Christians are people who pray. Prayer is essential, as natural and as necessary as breathing. …
Intercessory prayer disciplines us to remember this truth. The sorrow of someone else becomes my sorrow. The struggle of a friend weighs upon me. And the accomplishment of a friend helps me to see my own world in a brighter hue. … I am not the body of Christ. I am a member of the body.
– Kenneth H. Carter Jr
“Pray for Me”
From pages 60-61 of “Pray for Me”: The Power in Praying for Others by Kenneth H. Carter Jr. Copyright © 2011 by Kenneth H. Carter Jr. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. http://bookstore.upperroom.org/ Learn more about or purchase this book.
Do you pray regularly with a friend or family member? If so, what advice would you give to a person who would like to practice this discipline?Share your thoughts.
12:7 To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.
1 Corinthians 12:7, NRSV
This Week: pray for those you find difficult to love. Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section below.
Did You Know?
Caring volunteers are available to pray with you. Call 1-800-251-2468 or request prayer online. The Upper Room Living Prayer Center receives 500 prayer requests each day and prays for each request by name and need.
This week we remember Anthony of Egypt (January 11).
(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
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