The purpose of ABIDE is to help us draw near to God in prayer as we gather in small groups or as we spend time alone with God.
God’s Christmas Gift
Christmas is the time of the year when we celebrate the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Scripture tells us, Today in the city of David a Savior is born for you, who is the Messiah, the Lord. (Luke 2:11) God gave us the greatest gift we could possibly receive when He gave us Jesus.
Let’s begin ABIDE by taking a moment to quiet our hearts and minds before God. Simply take a deep breath and exhale slowly. You may want to pray a “breath prayer” as you inhale and exhale, such as, “Father, thank you for Jesus.”
Note: If you are leading a small group through ABIDE, pray the first prayer below over those you are leading. If you are praying ABIDE alone, use the second prayer.
Small Group Prayer: Lord, we give our hearts and lives to you. We surrender all that is within us to you. We love you and we need you. Spirit, fill us and lead us as we pray. We consecrate this time of prayer to you. Remove any distractions and help us focus on you. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Personal Prayer: Lord, I give my heart to you. I surrender every area of my life to you. I choose to trust you with my whole heart and with everything in my life. You are my good, good Father who loves me. Thank you that you are faithful, all-knowing and all-powerful. Remove any distractions from me and help me focus on you. Holy Spirit, fill me and help me discern your voice as I pray. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Prayers of Thanksgiving
Scripture tells us, See what great love the Father has given us that we should be called God’s children – and we are! (1 John 3:1a) God’s love changed our lives. We are God’s sons and daughters because of the incredible gift of God’s love.
But God proves his own love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8)
Let’s thank our Father for specific ways our lives have been changed because of His love for us.
Prayer: Father, thank you for ________________________________ (fill in the blank with specific ways your life has been changed in the past and how your future is changed because of the gift of Jesus).
Prayers to Refocus on Jesus
As God’s sons and daughters, the enemy does not want us to celebrate the gift of Jesus that our Father gave to us. The enemy would prefer God’s children to be distracted, overwhelmed, busy and striving during the Christmas season in hopes of stealing our joy, peace and our celebration of Jesus.
Take a moment and ask the Spirit to show you how the enemy is working in your life to take your focus off of Jesus and the true celebration of Christmas.
Prayer: Father, forgive me/us for ________________ (fill in the blank with whatever is driving your heart and mind away from focusing on the gift of Jesus).
Now let’s ask our Father to help us receive what our hearts truly need this Christmas.
Prayer: Father, help me/us receive your _____________ (fill in the blank with what your heart needs – God’s love peace, hope, comfort, strength, etc).
Prayer for Others to Receive God’s Love
For God loved the world in this way: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. (John 3:16-17)
We all have people in our lives who either have never received God’s gift of Jesus or perhaps do not feel loved by God. Let’s take a moment and pray for anyone the Spirit brings to mind and ask God to help them receive the gift of His love this Christmas.
Prayer: God, we/I pray for _____________ and ask that you help him/her to receive your love. Open his/her eyes to the truth of Christmas and what the gift of Jesus means for their life. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Jesus, thank you for coming into the world to save us, deliver us and give your life for us. Help us to receive deeply your Gospel and what that means for our hearts, families and those who are hurting, broken and perhaps do not know you. Open our eyes to see you and others more clearly. Empower us by your Spirit to love you and others in a way that celebrates you this Christmas. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.