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Praying the Scriptures

“Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.” —Deut 6:4–9 (NIV84)

At some time, you’ve probably thought, How do I pray? What do I say? How do I get started? In the Old Testament verses of Deuteronomy, we are reminded of this mandate, which was given to the nation of Israel.

And when we concentrate on the verbs in this passage, we will be eating the Word. What are they? Hearloveimpresstalktie, and write. Imagine taking these actions with the Word of God.

What happens when we read the Word, teach the Word, talk about the Word, carry the Word, and write the Word? We begin to speak, pray, and live the Word. I can imagine that in ancient times, young Jewish boys memorized the Word as their family members heard, recited, and participated in discussing it. And that it was also natural for them to pray God’s Word back to Him.

We can do the same. We can pray God’s Word over ourselves, over other people, and even over our and other nations.

As we begin to pray the Word, let us consider doing so out loud. Hearing the Word reinforces the printed Word. Often when we pray silently, we easily become distracted. But when we finish praying out loud, when we no longer can hear our voices, we hear silence, and it alerts us that we’ve stopped praying the Word.

At the beginning of this new year, you are encouraged to read the Word daily. The Eastern Territory produces the “No Bible, No Bread; No Bible, No Bed” reading plan. There are several other plans to be found online or in your local Christian bookstore. In addition to reading the Bible each day, Praying the Bible: The Book of Prayers by Wesley and Stacy Campbell is a resource to assist in praying the Scriptures. The book can be purchased through Amazon.com or through your local Christian bookstore. Other Bible reading plans and resources for praying the Scriptures can be located at www.armyonitsknees.org along with the territorial prayer requests.

Whatever you do, get into the Word!

—Colonel Janice Howard is the
Territorial Secretary for
Spiritual Life Development

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