Last year (2019), I went through David B. Calhoun’s edition of “Prayers on the Psalms” (@BannerofTruth) about 2 1/2 times, with daily prayer postings on social media (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram). This year (2020) I am going to work through O. Palmer Robertson’s edition of Matthew Henry’s “A Way to Pray” (@BannerofTruth).
Dr. Robertson suggests that the best way to read/use “A Way to Pray” is to “read it on your knees,” that is, pray it as you read. Personalize it. Persist until your thoughts & words in prayer are being shaped more & more by Scripture. Indeed, he says: “Christians would be transformed as they reshaped their souls daily by praying in the language of Scripture itself.”
Robertson outlines Matthew Henry’s six categories or parts of prayer as Praise, Confession, Petition, Thanksgiving, Intercession, Conclusion. To further simplify, I am going to use the terms Praise, Confess, Pardon, Request, Thank, Intercede, and Conclude as the seven headers for my daily snippets of Scripture Prayer on social media as I work through the book. You will note that I have both prayers of confession and for pardon (which Matthew Henry and O. Palmer Robertson include under the one category of Confession).
For example. I start the year off this way.
Praise: We lift up our hearts, eyes & hands to you, O God in the heavens. We seek your face. We give to you the glory due your name. We worship you, God who is spirit, in spirit & truth.
Confess: O our God, we are ashamed of our sin. We want to hide our faces from you because of our iniquity. With the leper under the law we cry out “Unclean, unclean.” Woe to us.
Pardon: For your name’s sake, O Lord, pardon my iniquity, for it is great. Because of your lovingkindness forgive my sins. Lord, please! Deliver me! Hurry to help me.
Request: Lord, you have given us many exceedingly great & precious promises. They are all confirmed as “Yes” & “Amen” in Jesus Christ. Now let it happen to your servants exactly according to your word.
Thank: O Lord, to you we give thanks. Your wondrous works proclaim that you are among us in all your glory. All that is within us blesses your holy name. We forget not your benefits.
Intercede: Lord, teach transgressors your ways and let sinners be converted to you. Prepare a people for yourself. Let those who are still dead in trespasses and sins be made alive. Say to them, “Live!”
Conclude: God of peace, you brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, equip us now with everything good that we may do your will.
I hope you will be edified and encouraged by this use of social media. May our use of social media prompt us to prayer and aid our sanctification, rather than hindering it.