On Sunday, we continued our vGroups series, looking at how vGroups exist for transformation. If you missed the sermon, you can check it out here. We talked about how transformation ultimately comes through two means: Scripture and prayer. Yesterday, we noted the importance of being in the Word both individually as well as communally. You can find that blog post here.
We believe that prayer is also an important ingredient in experiencing transformation. Why? Because, like Scripture, it is one of the primary ways we experience God and thereby experience transformation. Because prayer is so important, we believe it is a vital element of our vGroups. We desire for our vGroups to pray with one another and for one another. How can we do that together?
Tips for Praying Together
In Habits of Grace, David Mathis, discusses the importance of spiritual disciplines, including the discipline of praying together. In the book, he offers five counsels for praying with company.1 These are valuable tips for anyone, including vGroup leaders.
- Make It Regular. Mathis encourages us to make it a regular habit to set aside time in our vGroups to pray for one another. He encourages vGroups to commit to a set amount of time to focus on prayer. At the end of that time, reconsider how you will continue to emphasize prayer.
- Start with Scripture. A great way to begin prayer is by reading Scripture. Prior to praying, read a Psalm together and then pray.
- Limit Share Time. This can be one of the most difficult elements of praying together. One of the best ways to limit share time is to encourage people to share their requests by praying for them with the information needed to let others in on what they're praying for.
- Encourage Brevity and Focus. To maintain focus and attention, encourage people in your vGroup to pray short, concise prayers. This can best be done sometimes by people praying one-sentence prayers.
- Pray without Show, but with Others in Mind. It's always important to remember that pray is not about impressing God or others. So, encourage people to pray simply to God with others in mind. Have the focus be not on who is praying but who is being prayed for.
1David Mathis, Habits of Grace: Enjoying Jesus through the Spiritual Disciplines (Wheaton: Crossway, 2016), 110-11.