I find that prayer takes discipline. I don’t mean that prayer is a spiritual discipline. It is. But on a more practical level, for our own purposes, we need to be disciplined to consistently pray about what is important to us. As Christian business owners, we all pray, and we look for ways to pray about and for our business.
I was looking through a bunch of old journals this weekend. I usually write all of my prayers to God in my journal. Actually, I write everything to God in my journal and call it prayer! In reviewing journals from 10+ years ago I realized how much more disciplined I was about praying for my business. The interesting thing, since I was journaling (aka praying) so consistently back then, is that I could also see the impact on me, my life, and my work through prayer.
There are so many practical benefits to consistently praying to God about our business. Here are my observations:
- I was proactive about lifting up my clients and business rather than reactively begging God to fix my messes–sincere dependence and petition.
- I could see a positive shift in my mood by the end of the journal entry/prayer–it was hope and peace.
- I could see answers to prayer through subsequent entries–God’s faithfulness.
I still pray about my business regularly, but sometimes on a different rhythm. I am not as consistent or proactive. I pray more randomly. Different disjointed topics many times reactively. Which isn’t as effective and, quite honestly, is not what I believe.
I believe that Christ should be the center of my business. He gave me the vision for it and He has led me toward the vision.
I also know that I am dependent on Him for everything. I know I need to do my part, but I need to do it in obedience to His will. If I am not bringing my business to him proactively, this is not true dependence.
And, the purpose of my business is to glorify God and to help His kingdom. Bottom-line, without Christ at the center of it all proactively, I am not going to be perfectly aligned.
I know everyone’s business is different and will therefore need different prayers, but, in some form or another, if you are disciplined in praying for our business, my pattern may work for you:
- Thank God for your business. When we truly believe that our vision and business are from Him, we will thank Him consistently.
- Ask for guidance and direction toward His will for your business. This means seeking His path and plans for you consistently so that you stay on the right track, rather than waiting to pray for help to return to His path.
- Lift up the specific needs of your customers, your staff, and other stakeholders. Pray for others.
- Lift up specific organizational issues that you want God’s wisdom and discernment for in your decision-making.
- Ask God for favor in your business. Ask for doors to open. Ask for help. Ask for Him to work through you.
- Give it to God. Once you have prayed, trust that the Holy Spirit will lead and guide you and let go of the habits of our flesh–worrying, controlling, and indecision. Move into your day with a heart of obedience and a mind ready to listen.
I know that God hears our prayers even when all we can do is groan. But the discipline is for us. Being disciplined in praying for our business reminds us where our business came from, Who we are really working for, and Who is truly in control.
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.” Philippians 4:6