This Sunday School Lesson on prayer for adult small groups recognizes that prayer doesn’t always come easily. And it emphasizes that sometimes we need help to know when to pray, how to pray, and what to pray about. Use this lesson to help members of your church or small group learn to pray with confidence as they approach God in prayer for themselves and for others.
In this post, we share a brief introduction on the topic of prayer: what it is, how God answers our prayers, and why we seem to struggle with prayer. We hope that the set of Sunday School lessons that we’ve made available in this post helps you share these truths with your church or small group. Find details about what’s inside this download at the bottom of the page.
What is Prayer?
Although the Bible says a lot about prayer, it never actually defines it. One definition says, “Prayer is a conversation of the heart with God.” But it’s even more than that.
Prayer is honoring God for who He is, admitting our shortcomings to Him, thanking Him for what He does, and asking Him for specific things. Yet there is a deeper level still. Prayer is simply enjoying God’s Presence throughout our day.
The great mystery about prayer is that Jesus prayed all the time.
Why did He pray? Wasn’t He God? Didn’t He already know what was going to happen? Mark 1:35 says, “And rising very early in the morning, while it was still dark, he departed and went out to a desolate place, and there he prayed.” This was His daily habit. He, too, wanted to enjoy God’s presence, and so he spent time in prayer.
Our Invitation to Pray
God invites us to pray. Stop and consider the high honor of this invitation. (Our Prayer Sunday School Lesson highlights this idea, too.) The God of the universe invites us to talk with Him at anytime and anywhere about anything and everything. It’s incredible when you think about it. God wants us to pour out our hearts to Him in every situation. Nothing is too big or too small to bring before Him.
Prayer is really God’s invitation for us to include Him in every activity and event in our lives. Prayer is an act of obedience and humility.
How God Answers Prayer
God doesn’t care if your prayer is long or short, eloquent or inarticulate, or clever or clumsy. God hears your heart. The best part is that God promises to answer every prayer.
He answers our prayers one of three ways – “Yes” or “No” or “Wait.” It’s like a traffic light: Red for Stop! Yellow for Caution! Green for Go!
His answer isn’t an indication for us to stop praying but an invitation for us to start changing what we are seeking. God knows what is best for us. He sees the big picture. If He says “No,” ask Him what direction He wants you to head. If He says “Wait,” ask Him to show the right time to move forward. If He says “Yes,” continue to pursue what God is giving you.
He doesn’t always answer the way we want. However, He does promise that when we pray in line with His will, we know for certain that we have the request we have asked of Him.
Prayer is not about changing God’s mind – it’s about us changing our actions.
So often we think that prayer is about changing God’s mind; but it’s really about changing our lives as God directs.
The Struggle to Pray
But in spite of the fact that God invites us to pray and promises to answer our prayers, many of us still struggle to make prayer a daily part of our spiritual walks. And even after seeing Jesus model a life of devoted prayer, we can be unsure of what to say or even where to start.
We repeatedly need to be taught what the Bible says about prayer, and we need consistent encouragement to move past daily distractions and commit to a regular time of prayer. (The activities inside of these Sunday School Lessons on prayer are intended to help with this.)
Sunday School Lesson on Prayer for Adult Small Groups
This set of Sunday School lessons on prayer for adult small groups can help you do just that for members of your church.
This series is titled, “Pray with Confidence, ” and each lesson provides practical insight and encouragement to adults on the topic of prayer.
The first week’s Sunday School lesson focuses on why we can approach God in prayer. It highlights that we have advocate with the Father in Jesus Christ, and that allows us to approach the throne of grace with confidence and present our prayer requests to God.
The second weeks’ Sunday School lesson considers how we should pray for others. It instructs that we should pray for others as we would have them pray for us.
In each lesson on prayer you’ll find:
- An Opening Discussion Question
- A Reflection on What the Bible Says about Prayer
- A Set of Discussion Questions
- Suggestions for Further Reading
- A Memory Verse
- A Prayer Activity