The mighty and living God wants a relationship with you. One of the ways He relates to you is through prayer. There are different kinds of prayer because each one brings you closer to Him in different ways. Each one creates different opportunities to experience His love. A.C.T.S. is a simple acronym to help you remember several key elements of prayer, which include adoration, confession, thanksgiving, and supplication.
You can see these elements in a marriage. I adore my wife, so I tell her all the reasons why she’s beautiful. That’s adoration.
I also confess things to my wife. I’ll tell her, ”Honey, I’m sorry, I shouldn’t have done that.” Or I acknowledge where I’ve offended her, and I apologize. That’s confession.
I thank my wife for everything she does for me and our family. “Honey,” I say, “I’m thankful to you for raising our kids. I’m so thankful for how good you are to me. Thank you so much for how you serve this family.” That’s thanksgiving.
Finally, I will ask her for things. I’ll say, “Honey, this is what I need from you right now.” That’s supplication.
In our marriage, we regularly give adoration, confession, thanksgiving, and supplication. This is relationship.
If we want to be in a relationship with God, we need to do the same thing with Him. Prayer is conversation with God. In prayer, we adore, confess, give thanks, and supplicate.
David adored God.“God,” he said, “you are so good. Look at all the wonderful things you’ve done!” David listed them in beautiful songs that we still use today, just to adore God.
David also confessed. Look at Psalm 51, where he said, “God, man, I messed up. I tanked it. I killed this woman’s husband so I could be with her. I blew it. Please do not take your Spirit from me in my stupidity.”
David was also very thankful. “Thank you, God! I can see how you rescued me from my enemies. You let me hide in the cave of Adullam. I was in a cave of all places! But you still rescued me from Saul and his mighty army. Thank you, God.”
David also asked for the things he needed, and we can do that, too. We can say, “God, I need you to provide for my needs. I need you to show me the things I need to know. I need you, in your goodness, to talk to me, teach me, and encourage me. God, I need wisdom. I can’t do this on my own.”
It’s important to ask God for the things you need, but it’s too easy to go straight to prayers of supplication and forget about other ways of praying. We’re only human after all, and life is tough! We need a lot of help! But if we don’t pray beyond asking for things, we miss out on a much more complete relationship with God. God is our wisdom, our strength, our shield, and our fortress. So let us adore Him, confess to Him, and thank Him. That’s relationship!
God is the ultimate giver of life, right? So let’s give Him thanks and adoration today. Let’s go to Him and say, ”We adore you, God, for giving us life. Thank you!”
And then, let’s experience His love.