One day the disciples requested of Jesus: “Teach us to pray.” Jesus responded by giving them—and us—a marvelous model of prayer. What is so powerful about the Lord’s Prayer, as it is known, is its utter simplicity.
Our Father in heaven, may your name be honored and kept holy. May your kingdom come soon. May your will be done here on earth, just as it is in heaven. Give us our food for today, and forgive us our sins, just as we have forgiven those who have sinned against us. And don’t let us yield to temptation, but rescue us from the evil one.
~ Matthew 6:9-13 NLT
The key to prayer is to start simply and quietly. That’s the idea behind Jesus’ model prayer. We need a touchstone, a place to start. Then, as we get to know God better, we will feel comfortable sharing the most intimate details of our lives with Him.
If the Bible is God talking to us, then prayer is us talking to God. It’s the primary way of connecting to the infinite, all-powerful, all-knowing, all-loving God. Edward Ferrell wrote that “without prayer, there is no way, no truth, no life.” Without prayer, you can never get close to God.
Try it. Start small. Start with the small stuff in your life. Talk to God about it in a quiet, isolated place where your self-consciousness isn’t an issue. As you continue daily, your capacity for prayer will grow larger. That’s because prayer is like a muscle. If you exercise it regularly, your prayer muscle will gain strength and your appreciation for God will grow immeasurably. On the other hand, if you don’t use it, your prayer muscle will shrivel up and your capacity for God will shrink. And in those times of crisis when you suddenly feel compelled to pray, it will likely be a painful experience.
The good news is that God doesn’t put conditions on your prayer life. His feelings don’t get hurt when you don’t pray. But when you do, He connects with you in a powerful way. Try it today. Talk to God. He’s listening.
- Prayer changes things.
- Pray for people who dislike you.
- Pray for people you dislike.
- When you pray, be careful to distinguish your needs from your desire.
- Prayer without effort will be insincere. Effort without prayer will be ineffective.
- If your prayers don’t mean anything to you, they mean even less to God.
- Live humbly and pray likewise.
- Don’t pray for a lighter load. Pray for a stronger back.
- Become quiet before God in the busiest and nosiest part of your day.
- Prayer involves listening to God as well as speaking to Him.
- You can’t stand up against the enemy if you don’t kneel before God.
- Pray with perseverance and expectancy.
- At its core, prayer is giving yourself to God.
- Pray as if the task depends on God and work as if it depends on you.
- The next time you feel weak in the knees, try using them to pray.
- There is no such thing as a successful or unsuccessful prayer.
- People may not talk about their prayer habits, but their lives speak volumes when they pray.
A Note from Ruthie:
According to my journal entry, I read the above words in June 2005. I’m not sure who wrote these words but I do remember that reading this helped change my prayer life and how I connect with God. I hope it does the same for you too. Blessings to you and yours.
Until next time,