Tuesday

Prayer

Of all the components of the life of a the disciple of Christ, prayer may be the one that has the greatest discrepancy between knowledge of and application of. (Money is probably right up there as well......)  I know that I do not pray as often or as intently as I should.  I also know I have no real reason or excuse for my lack of prayer.  We so often cite the imperative of prayer and then live a life that indicates that prayer is at best beneficial and at worst unnecessary.

I think the most glaring example of this disconnect is one that I have seen in my own life and ministry as a pastor at times.  We say that we believe the bible when it teaches that no one comes to God unless He draws them (John 6:44).  If that is true (and it is true) then shouldn't a crucial part of every ministry be intense, intentional prayer that God would draw people to Himself?  I have found that so often prayer becomes an afterthought compared to the logistics of the event in question.

How have we let this happen?

Pride certainly plays a part.  A belief, whether conscious or unconscious, that if we plan and prepare well enough that we will be able to accomplish what only the Holy Spirit can.

Misunderstanding of the gospel and salvation leads to a decrease in the importance of prayer.  If I don't really believe that God is totally responsible for every aspect of my and others salvation then there is less need to pray that He will save others.

Laziness also factors in.  Prayer is hard work.  Paul says Epaphras struggles in prayer  (Colossians 4:12) for a reason, namely it is work!

This is certainly not an exhaustive list but I know that each of these has played a part in my personal struggle to pray over the years.

What about you?  Do you pray the way you want or think you should?  Why not?

Disciple, Husband, Father, 3rd Grade Teacher.

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