"Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God." (1 John 4:7)
Begin your prayer time by praising God for who He is (His character). He is gracious, etc. Praise God that He is the Father of the human family on earth. Praise God that He wants the human family to reflect His beauty and character.
Confession and Claiming Victory Over Sin (approximately 5 minutes)
Ask God to show you which sins to confess privately. Claim His victory over those sins. Ask God for forgiveness for times that you did not reflect God in your family. Ask God for forgiveness for times that you did not honor and respect your parents and siblings. • Thank God that He forgives you according to 1 John 1:9.
Supplication and Intercession (approximately 35 minutes)
Ask God to fill your heart with the Holy Spirit and make you a living example to your family. Ask God that each member of your family be drawn closer to Christ. Ask God to protect Adventist families from the attacks of the devil, including the families in your local church. Ask God for healing where this is needed. Pray that church leaders (your local pastor, conference, union, division, and General Conference leaders) and their families will reflect Christ to the world. Pray for a wonderful harvest of souls resulting from seeds planted during the Great Controversy distribution project in all its various formats.
Pray for parents to reflect Christ to their children and raise them for the Kingdom. Pray that God will give a full understanding of Christ’s method (comprehensive health ministry), allowing all church members to meet people’s needs and follow Christ’s pattern of service to others. Pray for the united evangelistic and witnessing activities of every Seventh-day Adventist man, woman, and child around the world. Pray that we are empowered by the Holy Spirit as we submit to His leading in our lives.
Beseech the Lord on behalf of Seventh-day Adventist families, that they may be models of how Christ can bring peace and love into homes, removing any abuse and stress through the sanctifying power of Christ’s righteousness and pointing to Christ’s soon return and the ultimate joining of God’s eternal family in heaven.
Mission to the Cities—Pray for the Euro-Asia Division and the cities they are working in: Moscow, Kiev, Kishinev, Donetsk, Kharkov, Minsk, St. Petersburg, Novosibirsk, Krasnoyarsk, Khabarovsk, Rostov-on- Don, Tbilisi, Yerevan, and Almaty. Pray for the thousands of outreach activities and reaping events currently taking place.
Pray that the seven (or more) people on your list will see their need and open their hearts for the Holy Spirit. Pray for any personal needs you have. Thanksgiving (approximately 10 minutes)
Thank God that He is working on your family members’ hearts. Thank God that He is willing to cleanse, purify, and abide in you and your family. Thank God that Jesus gave us an example of how to honor our parents and love our siblings.
“Happy the Home” (SDA Hymnal #655); “Lord Bless Our Homes” (SDA Hymnal #654); “Love at Home” (SDA Hymnal #652); “ ’Tis Love That Makes Us Happy” (SDA Hymnal #579).
Christ Reflected in the Family
“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God.” 1 John 4:7
The religion of Christ will lead us to do all the good possible, to both high and low, rich and poor, happy and oppressed. But especially will it lead to the manifestation of kindness in our own family. It will be manifested by acts of courtesy and love to father and mother, husband, wife, and child. We are to look to Jesus, to catch His Spirit, to live in the light of His goodness and love, and to reflect His glory upon others. (My Life Today, p. 200)
Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. (James 4:7, KJV)
If you will give yourself fully to Jesus He will create in you an intense desire for the friendship of God, and you will have deep longings to reflect the goodness and the love of Jesus in your life and character to your family and to those who know not the love of God. By cultivating patience, meekness, forbearance, by showing respect and rendering obedience to your father and mother as it is fit in the Lord, you will be giving testimony in your everyday life that the truth has power to sanctify the character. (Manuscript Releases, vol. 4, p. 194)
It is a hard matter to adjust family difficulties, even when husband and wife seek to make a fair and just settlement in regard to their several duties, if they have failed to submit the heart to God. (The Adventist Home, p. 119) He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (John 7:38, KJV)
If the will of God is fulfilled, the husband and wife will respect each other and cultivate love and confidence. Anything that would mar the peace and unity of the family should be firmly repressed, and kindness and love should be cherished. He who manifests the spirit of tenderness, forbearance, and love will find that the same spirit will be reflected upon him. Where the Spirit of God reigns, there will be no talk of unsuitability in the marriage relation. If Christ indeed is formed within, the hope of glory, there will be union and love in the home. Christ abiding in the heart of the wife will be at agreement with Christ abiding in the heart of the husband. They will be striving together for the mansions Christ has gone to prepare for those who love Him. (The Adventist Home, p. 120)
We must have the Spirit of God, or we can never have harmony in the home. The wife, if she has the spirit of Christ, will be careful of her words; she will control her spirit, she will be submissive, and yet will not feel that she is a bondslave, but a companion to her husband. If the husband is a servant of God, he will not lord it over his wife; he will not be arbitrary and exacting. We cannot cherish home affection with too much care; for the home, if the Spirit of the Lord dwells there, is a type of heaven. . . . If one errs, the other will exercise Christlike forbearance and not draw coldly away. (The Adventist Home, p. 118)
If you have high aims, and purpose to reach an elevated standard, the home life is the very best discipline you can have. If you are wrong at home, you will be wrong in every aim and endeavor. Begin there to perfect a character that God will approve, that will make you a blessing at home; and when away from home, you will not fail to be a blessing to those you are brought in contact with. Religion practiced in the home will reflect beyond the home circle. (The Youth’s Instructor, April 21, 1886, par. 7)
Questions for Personal Reflection
1. How can you lead your family by example to a life more abundant in Christ?
2. Have you always been a good family member? Do you need make some things right? Do you need to make your family more of a priority instead of other things?