Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need. (Hebrews 4:16)
"The Throne of Grace"
This month you’ve probably learned again that prayer is hard work! Often we are like the disciples when Jesus asked them to “watch and pray” in the garden. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak. On the flip side, you may have also discovered that prayer is a source of fresh grace and mercy for our times of need.
We often think of grace as undeserved favor, our acceptance with God because of the work of Christ, apart from our works. This rich truth frees us from works righteousness and from performing to earn acceptance with God and others.
But grace is also a source of God’s strength and power. So we speak of prayer and other things as “means of grace.” In his book Salvation Belongs to the Lord, John Frame describes the means of grace as “channels by which God gives spiritual power” to his people.
This month, as a church family, we have prayed “large petitions” on behalf of the lost, the found, the city, and the world. We have been praying that his kingdom would come, that his will would be done on earth as it is in heaven. Let us give thanks that he hears even our feeble prayers!
The same King who answers our prayers for the advance of the gospel is also attentive to our personal needs. Even today we are all in a “time of need.” How encouraging that we can receive mercy and grace from the throne of grace!
How to pray...
- How would you describe your “time of need” today? Take some moments to honestly talk with God about your needs, and offer prayers for fresh mercy and grace.
- The grace of God is also a source of strength and power for our congregation, as we pursue the vision that God has for us. Pray that his grace would shape and transform all of our hearts through prayer, through worship, through community, and through the Word of his grace.
- Ask God for the fruit of grace in each of our lives: a growing love for God and neighbor.
For the Family
Lately we’ve prayed for lots of BIG things, like countries on the other side of the world! God made the entire universe and he is in control of it all, which is why we can pray for BIG things. Nothing is too big for God!
But did you know that God also cares about you and your personal needs? Nothing is too small for God!
Here’s what the bible says about God caring for small things: “Not a single sparrow can fall to the ground without your Father knowing it. And the very hairs on your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows.” (Matthew 10:29-31)
Click HERE to download a coloring sheet with this verse!
This verse describes how God is paying attention to two very small things. First it says that he knows every time a sparrow falls to the ground. So if a nest falls out of a tree, God cares about those baby birds!
But then it says God knows how many hairs are on your head. Can you imagine trying to count how many hairs you have? That would take forever! But God loves you so much that he knows and cares about every detail about your life.
So if you’re worried about a spelling test or upset because a friend hurt your feelings, God is not too busy to hear about it. God also loves it when we take time to thank him for things that make us happy. The bible says that “every good and perfect gift” comes from God. Whether it’s a new friend or a delicious ice cream cone, we can thank God for every good thing in our lives.
Talk as a family, then pray together:
- What are some “small” things that you can thank God for today? Praise him for “every good and perfect gift” when you pray.
- What are some things that you’re worried about or that make you sad? Talk to God about those things. Ask him to comfort you when you’re worried or upset.
"The Throne of Grace" - Mike Tilley
Mike Tilley is the senior pastor of Lake Baldwin Church, and has lived in Orlando since 1994. He and his wife, Molly, worked with a core group from the Baldwin Park community to plant Lake Baldwin Church in 2006. Mike loves teaching the Bible in a way that relates to real life. In his spare time, Mike enjoys good movies, long dinner with friends, snow skiing, hanging out with his kids and two granddaughters, and travel.
"For the Family" - Katie Pollard
Katie is the administrator and communications director for LBC. Katie and her husband, Joel, moved to Orlando from Nashville, TN in 2014, when Joel became the Director of Worship at LBC. They both grew up in Carrollton, GA and have been leading worship together since their youth group days. They were married in 2011 and have two children, Sam and Evie.