Reverse Engineering, Self-control and Sober-mind

1 Peter 4:7 says, “The end of all things is at hand; therefore be self-controlled and sober-minded for the sake of your prayers.”

How is your prayer life?  What comes to your mind when you think about praying?

Peter provides us with helpful pictures as he encourages believers to pray.
1. Reverse Engineering
2. Self-Control
3. Sober-Mind

Reverse Engineering
How many of us think about goals, deadlines, and due dates when we think about prayer life?
I am learning to pray with end goals in mind because prayer is not merely a personal activity or exercise for me to feel better about myself. A praying life is not for me to present myself more spiritual than others.

Peter reminds the believers that the context of praying life is the end of all things or the second coming of Jesus Christ. The deadline has been set. The goal of life on earth is clear. Jesus is coming again. The full and complete rule and reign of Christ is fast approaching. People need to know, hear, and see that Jesus is Lord, Savior and King. I need to go and make disciples of all nations because that is what Jesus commissioned his followers to do personally and communally.

If you find a praying life hard and difficult for you to grasp and grow in, then you are most likely not aware of the end goal of your praying life. If making disciples is not the end goal of your daily, weekly, monthly and annual schedule and calendar, your prayer life will be filled with concerns of making money, making a living, or making your own dream come true.

Self-Control
People pray when they feel like things in their life are getting out of control. We often pray for healing, help and hope in times of trouble, problems and difficulties. Sometimes our prayers are like tickets we purchase for different activities and events. We pray for daily routines like praying before meals or during the drastic events that take away our sense of control and security. We often pray for a sense of control by us and for us.

The Bible speaks about self-control as a fruit or a consequence of being in a personal relationship with the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22). Just as little children feel safe and secure when they are with their parents, self-control is the result of walking with or keeping in step with the Holy Spirit.

Self-control is a prerequisite to our prayer life rather than a spiritual product we purchase with our acts of prayer.

Sober-Mind
The greatest challenge people face today might be the flood of information and resources available to people and knowing how to navigate in the turbulent waters of knowledge and know-hows. Everyone wants to know the secret to happy and healthy life. People use meditations, repeat mantras, seek counseling, and consult endless Dummies guides and videos.

Even Christians see prayers as a way for them to receive wisdom, discernment and answers to difficult questions or situations. Yes, we do need to ask for wisdom, discernment and answers in our prayers. But the important question we need to ask is, “Why do we pray for wisdom and answers?”

In Romans 12:2, Paul makes an appeal to believers in Rome to be transformed by the renewal of mind in contrast to the debased mind which he describes in Romans 1:28. The enemy attacks with lies in our minds to be scattered, deceived, and distorted in our view of God. This distortion leads people to be preoccupied in their minds and their schedules with whatever affords them happiness.

Sober-mind is also a prerequisite to our prayer life rather than something we want through prayers.

Peter makes it very clear in 1 Peter 4 that we want to be self-controlled and sober-minded for the sake of our prayers because we are stewards of God’s grace to the glory and dominion of Jesus here and now because the end is near.

How is your prayer life?  What comes to your mind when you think about praying?

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2 thoughts on “Reverse Engineering, Self-control and Sober-mind

  1. that prayer is the real battle. that we are in spiritual warfare and we are pleading for the power and hand of God to work in our world..

  2. My prayers are more, of thanks and wisdom to help fulfill his will. He has free me , He has been so good to me.
    All I can say is thank you Jesus!
    Let your glory reign on my brothers and sisters of the world
    I will spread the word!
    Jesus !
    Let the word (make) disciples not my will but yours !

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