Alice YoungFrontPage, News, Pastor

What opportunities do we take as a church to pray? Many Christians personally reflect they ‘don’t pray enough’. I often wonder what is ‘enough’. ‘Never’ praying we could agree is not enough. ‘Daily’ could be a solid effort. The Apostle Paul encouraged prayer ‘without ceasing’ (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18), which likely seems impractical to many. I suggest Paul is deepening our notions of prayer as an ever-present, dynamic, relationship with God. 

Christian leaders can feel their churches don’t pray ‘enough’. I wonder what is ‘enough’? I was once instructed by an older Pastor the church ‘prays when it can’. While pragmatic, it didn’t feel expectant. There is a church movement for 24/7 Prayer. That certainly covers ‘without ceasing’. What is enough for Unley Park Baptist? Here is my survey of what I know about our congregation: 

  • Many in our church pray regularly, if not daily. 
  • People are in prayer for their family, friends, those in need, significant events and more. 
  • We pray in our church services. 
  • All our 14 Growth Groups have times of prayer. 
  • Our youth and young adults pray together, in some way, most weeks. 
  • All our mentors and mentorees pray together. 
  • 55 people regularly pray for children in our church throughout the year. 
  • Our ministry teams pray for the people they serve, most every time they serve. 
  • Our staff pray together and with people every week. 
  • Our Council prays for our church personally and when they meet. 
  • We have a prayer network of 70 people who pray for special requests. You can join this network here
  • We currently have 4 dedicated prayer meetings focusing on our church’s ministries – Tue morning, afternoon, Wednesday evening (Iranian Church) and Sunday morning. 
  • We pray with many ministry partners for our shared ministries (chaplains, Engage Work Faith, Unley Ministers Fellowship, OM, TEAM, Baptist Mission Australia…). 
  • During Lent, we encourage a prayer focus on our church ministries for 40 days. More information at https://upbc.org.au/40days/
  • We pray at all our key public events, most often for the community we are serving. 

Does Unley Park Baptist pray enough? I list to encourage us. The takeaway message is our church prays! But ‘enough’ is not the right word, is it? Should we even use it for our church or personal prayer life? After all, we pray not to fill a quota but because we seek God. We want God to work, we want to know God more, we want to keep in step with his will. That is why we pray. And how incredible we have a heavenly Father who loves to answer his children’s prayers. 

In Him, 


Photo by Timothy Eberly on Unsplash