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 Post subject: Let's talk about prayer
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The Urantia Book teachings about prayer differ somewhat from the experience I had as a child in a large religion and weekly church services. As a result, I still wonder, sometimes, if I'm doing it right. I know UB says it is more about our intent than about the words we use, so if our prayer is sincere, we are certainly doing it 'right'. But, still. I feel like I tend to say that same phrases every day - and that doesn't seem super-sincere. I admit that sometimes I do it almost like a chore (at the times I do it every morning); although, coupled with my 'routine/ scheduled' prayer, I also spontaneously talk to God throughout my day.

One of my favorite teachings about prayer comes in paper 144, "Prayer is a part of the divine plan for making over that which is into that which ought to be."

What has been your experience of prayer? Any suggestions for how to keep it fresh and alive, when one wishes to reach out to God at least once a day ....


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I have no idea what to pray for.
When I do it is usually for a fix of some problem that seems overwhelming and I stop myself because it’s a problem that I should be able to resolve otherwise it would not be my problem.
Trying to talk to God is an exercise in futility for me although I do long to exchange my mind for the mind of Jesus. We are told this is possible. Call this a prayer if you will.


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"Oh dear God, please teach me this 'spirit leading' thing!"

Keep doing it until you get 'spirit leading'. I am serious!

Once you get 'spirit leading', your progress and growth will all be sped up!

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intellectual grasp - spiritual insight - personality outreach
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Be you perfecting, even as I am perfecting.


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On the other hand there are secret prayers and not so secret.
I have one of the latter that is so similar to one that Gabriel openly prays for the destruction of Lucifer and mine is for the destruction of phony third world politicians who crave power and wealth and pervert the only government based on the concept of true liberty. In the process destroy states like California New York Oregon and Washington with more on the chopping block.
I believe the 5 th epochal revelation is here for reasons quite different than the gospel of the 4th.
It has the framework for the survival of true liberty in government and I pray for its success.
Ever wonder why there is no dispensation associated with the 5th epochal revelation?


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I really hope this thread doesn’t get derailed by politics.

Edited to add: Forum Guidelines say:
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The Jesusonian Foundation is a 501 (c) (3) Nonprofit Religious Foundation. Organizations with this classification are prohibited from conducting political campaign activities to influence elections to public office. Consequently, discussions about political campaigns, political parties, an individual's or group's political leanings, or politicians are not allowed and will be deleted. Nevertheless, one is permitted to discuss the issues of governance and administration, and ethical behavior, as they appear in the Urantia Book.


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Agon D. Onter wrote:
I really hope this thread doesn’t get derailed by politics.

Edited to add: Forum Guidelines say:
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The Jesusonian Foundation is a 501 (c) (3) Nonprofit Religious Foundation. Organizations with this classification are prohibited from conducting political campaign activities to influence elections to public office. Consequently, discussions about political campaigns, political parties, an individual's or group's political leanings, or politicians are not allowed and will be deleted. Nevertheless, one is permitted to discuss the issues of governance and administration, and ethical behavior, as they appear in the Urantia Book.


So tell me that I vioated this guideline. Ill keep my mouth closed in the future.
But I do understand that people avoid the more sensitive issues in the 5th epochal revelation that are precieved to be politically incorrect.
I pray there will come a day when the UB readers forgets this sort of burry your head in the sand sort of thing and tries to confront the revealed realities of social, political and religious progress stated in the text head on as opposed to the PC progress out there today that is only for the sake of progress.
These are the things that I tend to pray about.
Isnt the book loaded with political stuff? Any of it make you uncomfortable?
Think about the Morontia training regime.
Think about the Prince, the Material son/daughter, Mel and their structured system of living and learning.
America had or maybe still has the ability to build on these patterns given to us in the revelation and that is a big reason it is sitting in my lap imho.
Nothing to shy away from imho.


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I love getting into a political debate. Just not here; it shows disrespect to the forum organizers and moderators to get carried away with politics. I'm not saying you violated the rules, necessarily, just saying I hope we can stay on topic.

Honestly, I don't pray much about national and global current events; except to ask a blessing and comfort of the victims and families of disasters and human cruelty/ dysfunction. I know that it doesn't matter if all earthly things collapse, so I don't see any need to ask for help and I have no power whatsoever with regard to laws and making war and such, so I leave that to those who do.

Sometimes, if I'm feeling magnanimous, I do ask that our national and world leaders will 'listen to the guidance of their Thought Adjusters'. But I tend to feel that most of them are horrible people, so then I just feel hopeless, and that's not good while praying. :|


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I try to share myself with prayer...a personal sharing of hope and trust and faith and gratitude....but also I really try to give God my sense of wonder and smallness and joyful experience....the experience of being and becoming! I try to share my tadpoleness! My eager and irreverent and playful and child-like perspective of my enjoyment of all God's gifts. I think God needs to feel the joy and the certainty of his creation!

I also list a few blessings which I enjoy and I know others do not. Simple and small things that I know others do not enjoy - family, shelter, showers and indoor plumbing, coffee, food (all things I have also lived without time to time and back in the day). Then I pray for those who have less than I do (and I am not wealthy by any standard nor am I a materialist so I don't miss all the stuff I don't even want to begin with...been a minimalist a long, long time) but so many today still have to walk so far for dirty water and a few sticks to cook with and hide from violence and live with real fears every day and watch their children suffer depravations that are unfair, people under someone's boot without justice or freedom or opportunity. I pray for those folks a lot.

Then I get personal and particular in prayers for those I love and know about their struggles and need for love and faith to deal with the material challenges they face. I also share my confusions and those things I am struggling with to understand or resolve.

Lastly I pray for courage and wisdom and opportunity to serve my family and community and the health and wealth needed for that. And give thanks for the daily bread that shows up as it is needed.

I find the Lord's Prayer a good working model for the steps and issues but think it is our attitude that is most important. I think it is a mistake to be too tiny and distant and somber. We approach our affectionate and paternal and very personal relationship with Father by prayer. No need to be too bashful I do not think. It is written in the Bible that Jesus called God "Abba" at Gethsemane..an affectionate and informal and personal name of endearment.

But …..I don't do this enough. So I pray to do better and to do more....with God's help.

144:2.2 “Prayer is entirely a personal and spontaneous expression of the attitude of the soul toward the spirit; prayer should be the communion of sonship and the expression of fellowship. Prayer, when indited by the spirit, leads to co-operative spiritual progress. The ideal prayer is a form of spiritual communion which leads to intelligent worship. True praying is the sincere attitude of reaching heavenward for the attainment of your ideals.

144:3.17 Jesus taught that effective prayer must be:
1. Unselfish —not alone for oneself.
2. Believing—according to faith.
3. Sincere—honest of heart.
4. Intelligent—according to light.
5. Trustful—in submission to the Father's all-wise will.

144:4.3 In all praying, remember that sonship is a gift. No child has aught to do with earning the status of son or daughter. The earth child comes into being by the will of its parents. Even so, the child of God comes into grace and the new life of the spirit by the will of the Father in heaven. Therefore must the kingdom of heaven —divine sonship—be received as by a little child. You earn righteousness—progressive character development—but you receive sonship by grace and through faith.

144:4.4 Prayer led Jesus up to the supercommunion of his soul with the Supreme Rulers of the universe of universes. Prayer will lead the mortals of earth up to the communion of true worship. The soul's spiritual capacity for receptivity determines the quantity of heavenly blessings which can be personally appropriated and consciously realized as an answer to prayer.

144:4.5 Prayer and its associated worship is a technique of detachment from the daily routine of life, from the monotonous grind of material existence. It is an avenue of approach to spiritualized self-realization and individuality of intellectual and religious attainment.

144:4.6 Prayer is an antidote for harmful introspection. At least, prayer as the Master taught it is such a beneficent ministry to the soul. Jesus consistently employed the beneficial influence of praying for one's fellows. The Master usually prayed in the plural, not in the singular. Only in the great crises of his earth life did Jesus ever pray for himself.

144:4.7 Prayer is the breath of the spirit life in the midst of the material civilization of the races of mankind. Worship is salvation for the pleasure-seeking generations of mortals.

144:4.8 As prayer may be likened to recharging the spiritual batteries of the soul, so worship may be compared to the act of tuning in the soul to catch the universe broadcasts of the infinite spirit of the Universal Father.

144:4.9 Prayer is the sincere and longing look of the child to its spirit Father; it is a psychologic process of exchanging the human will for the divine will. Prayer is a part of the divine plan for making over that which is into that which ought to be.

Bradly 8)


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Not interested in political debating but I’ll pray for the success of the 5th epochal revelation as in my opinion it has the keys to a successful political system.


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I had a similar problem with my prayer. I felt like I was redundant in my prayer. So I just decided all together stop praying in that sense. Instead what I do is let me feeling (yearning) drive the prayer, if that makes any sense.

Agon D. Onter wrote:
The Urantia Book teachings about prayer differ somewhat from the experience I had as a child in a large religion and weekly church services. As a result, I still wonder, sometimes, if I'm doing it right. I know UB says it is more about our intent than about the words we use, so if our prayer is sincere, we are certainly doing it 'right'. But, still. I feel like I tend to say that same phrases every day - and that doesn't seem super-sincere. I admit that sometimes I do it almost like a chore (at the times I do it every morning); although, coupled with my 'routine/ scheduled' prayer, I also spontaneously talk to God throughout my day.

One of my favorite teachings about prayer comes in paper 144, "Prayer is a part of the divine plan for making over that which is into that which ought to be."

What has been your experience of prayer? Any suggestions for how to keep it fresh and alive, when one wishes to reach out to God at least once a day ....

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Bradly,
Nice post !!

God knows what I need before I ask, yet sometimes I still ask, especially for the fruits of the spirit especially LOVE. Love does not come all that easily or naturally for me.

I have a few family members that I pray for in particular. My nephew has bi polar disorder and sometimes he descends into very dark places..he needs my prayers. I try to make an effort from time to time to mention every family member I know by name while praying. I have this plan to write out a list of everyone I can think of that I want to pray for because I have never done that and I think it would be thoughtful to make the effort to think of people I know that I haven't thought about in quite a while and include them in my prayers. I have included in my prayers (on a regular basis) some people who have done me wrong (so called enemies) although I really don't think of anyone as my enemy but I feel it does the soul good to include people who have wronged you or others in your prayers.

As far as keeping it fresh, that is something I need to work on. I skip praying for a few days and that helps because I don't want prayer to get monotonous.

This might not seem like much but sometimes I pray for my old co-workers. They're not family but they all have families and they are all part of the family of God. I pray for my old bosses that I did not get along with too. I pray for people I meet at the gym or somewhere that I shopped at.

I pray for my neighbors too. Sometimes I pray for people in leadership positions that I feel are doing a great service like Dr. Jordan Peterson etc. or I will pray for victims of tragedy of some sort.

I don't pray every day. I pray when the spirit moves me, sometimes it's 5 days in a row, sometimes a week goes by without prayer.


When I pray for others I don't pray for any outcome except growth, I just ask God to watch over us and give us what we need to grow spiritually. I do ask for God to comfort those who are troubled too.

That's what I make an effort to do and I hope that this helps give you some ideas that are helpful regarding prayer.



Paul


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I too am prayer deficient. I remember the words of the Authors… pray for values, not things. When I look out on the world and see so much awful stuff, then see folks praying for material things, I shrug and go my way. When I pray, its usually at a time of crisis, and for something (like someone close to me actually living thru something really bad). But a part of me recognizes that this is fairly useless, as I am praying for a thing, not a value.
Prayer has, in my opinion been perverted and distorted on this planet to something almost unrecognizable to the prayer the Authors speak of. So much worthless prayer gets shoved in my face periodically from my well-meaning uber religious friends that I just kind of have rejected it.
One cannot turn of the TV and flip mindlessly thru the channels without seeing some real bastardization of what prayer is. The other day I flipped over a channel where these guys were keening and bellowing basically gibberish, then SMASHING a vase. Then demanding cash for their “prayer” efforts to bring more money to whomever it is who would pay them. Apparently, this is a thing.
Disgusting.


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Oh, and to the guy who want my home destroyed along with the millions living there...
Bite me.


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Thank you to everyone who contributed valuable insights and ideas about prayer. While my routine morning prayer does tend to become repetitive, I feel that by setting aside that time first thing every morning and devoting those 5 minutes to God is a daily reminder to myself that God should come first in my life. I think God understands ....

The most rewarding communion I share with God is the spontaneous sharing of my inner life, which is perhaps technically 'worship', according to the UB. But I enjoy sharing my thoughts with God many times throughout the day.


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I prefer calling it 'communicating with God', rather than praying, simply because,
During my transition from an atheist to theism, I tried praying as I knew how- but I (sorry for the phrase) felt stupid, and pride wouldn't let me go beyond a few mumbles- so I stopped and gave up.
After reading about Jesus' teaching on prayer, I realized that it was essentially communication between the physical and the spiritual- a form of bonding that can not really be fully expressed but if real, (it is) many of us can attest to having experienced it- such a fullness of abundant joy and undiminishing hope, so much assurance that makes trivial problems seem like nothing and such a deep trust that one would not hold back if called to some duty... for his or her God. (I say this to imply that each of us have very unique experiences when it comes to the spiritual).
I never prepare myself for communication with God- and it never matters where I am- I just 'talk' and then take a few moments of silence to let Him 'talk' back. I know, I hear nothing consciously, but I believe that whatever the Lord tells me, my T.A understands and files away for that time when I'll be spiritually, mentally and intellectually ready to consciously hear and understand.
What do I talk to God and with God about? That I be more patient with those slow in learning, more understanding that we are differently endowed (intellectually), more tolerant of those with different views and ideas, never jealous of others' success and less envious of those who are more content in life than I am. I never ask for material things- work hard if you desire wealth.

Whenever I am in a difficult situation, I never ask God to intervene- rather, I tell Him to give me the wisdom to deal with the outcome, as I deal with it the best way I know how.


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