Message Action Plan

A Beginners Guide To Prayer

From Cinderella to Aladdin, these fairytale stories are based on characters whose lives are changed with the granting of a wish. When it comes to prayer, we often treat it like a magical wand that we wave at God when we want our dreams to come true. But the Bible teaches us that prayer is a relationship with God, and not an enchanted tool. In this message, Pastor Rick Warren shares the four foundational truths of prayer and how to connect with God in conversation. You’ll learn the importance of talking to him about everything in simple and sincere ways. Find out how prayer will draw you closer to God and why answered prayers are his gift of grace.

More from this series

“One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of the disciples said to him, ‘Lord, teach us to pray . . .’”  Luke 11:1 (NIV)

Our frustrations with prayer are caused by: misconceptions

  • not a magic wand
  • not a fire extinguisher
  • not a tug of war
  • not a ritual to relieve guilt

 4 FOUNDATIONAL TRUTHS ABOUT PRAYER 

  1. GOD LOVE FOR ME TO TALK WITH HIM ABOUT ANYTHING

   “The Lord is like a father to his children, tender and compassionate to those who reverence him.”  Psalm 103:13 (NLT)

“We can be confident in approaching God, knowing that he listens to us whenever we ask him for anything according to his will. And since we know that he hears us when we make our requests, then we can be sure that he will answer us.”  1 John 5:14-15

PRAYER IS:  A CONVERSATION, NOT A CEREMONY
A RELATIONSHIP, NOT A RITUAL

“I have good plans for you, not plans to hurt you. I will give you hope and a good future. Then you will call my name. You will come to me and pray to me, and I will listen to you.”  Jeremiah 29:11-12 (NCV)

ACTION PLAN: What do you tend to do more often, talk to God or post on social media?  On the devices where you check social media, install Bible apps if you haven’t already.  Place the apps physically next to your social media apps as a visual reminder to check in with God first and often. Anything that you think about posting on social media, talk to God about first.

  1. GOD LISTENS TO PRAYERS THAT ARE SINCERE AND SIMPLE

“When you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by men. I tell you the truth, they’ve received their reward in full. Instead, when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. And when you pray, do not keep babbling on and on like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.” Matthew 6:5-8 (NIV)

“Let us come near to God with a sincere heart and a sure faith . . .” Hebrews 10:22 (TEV)

  1. GOD LIKES TO SHOW HIS GRACE BY ANSWERING PRAYERS

“Call to me and I will answer you. I will show you marvelous and wondrous things that you could never figure out on your own.”  Jeremiah 33:3 (Message)

“If you, being imperfect and sinful parents know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good gifts to those  who ask him?” Matthew 7:11 (NLT)

“You do not have, because you do not ask God.”  James 4:2 (NIV)

  1. GOD LONGS TO BE CLOSE TO ME

“The Lord waits for you to come to him so he can show you his love and compassion.”  Isaiah 30:18 (NLT)

“I don’t want your sacrifices – I want your love! I don’t want your offerings, I want you to know me!”     Hosea 6:6 (LB)

“Friendship with God is reserved for those who reverence him. With them He shares the secrets of his covenant.” Psalm 25:14 (NLT)

“Draw close to God, and God will draw close to you.” James 4:8 (NLT)

ACTION PLAN: Write down Isaiah 30:18 (above) and keep it somewhere you will see every day. 

The Closer I Am To God, THE LESS STRESSED AND MORE BLESSED I’LL BE

ACTION PLAN: Make sure to join or start a 40 Days of Prayer Small Group.  Learn more here.

Doable Discipleship: Check out this week’s new episode (to be released on Tuesday) of the Doable Discipleship podcast and YouTube show. This week’s episode features an interview with Steve Gladen and Jason Williams on how to prepare for the 40 Days of Prayer campaign. To watch or listen, click here.

40 Days of Prayer
September 24 - November 26, 2017Watch Series
  • Do You Really Want To Grow Up?
    September 24, 2017
  • A Beginners Guide To Prayer
    October 1, 2017
  • Prayers That Work
    October 15, 2017
  • The Purpose, Practice, and Power of Prayer
    October 22, 2017
  • HOW TO PRAY THROUGHOUT YOUR DAY
    November 5, 2017
  • How To Pray For Healing & Restoration
    November 12, 2017
  • God is Not a Sleepy Friend
    November 19, 2017
  • When God Says "No"
    November 26, 2017