April 04, 2023
Everyone agrees that prayer is important, but few pray. We do what we think is valuable. We will make almost any adjustment to get what we think will bring meaning and purpose to our lives. So, if we are not really praying, it is apparent that we do not consider it as important as God declares that it is. (He spoke of it over 600 times in the Bible!)
So, why should we pray?
Jesus operated during his 33 years on earth as a man. He was God, but He laid His Divinity aside so He could become the perfect human sacrifice in our place. He always functioned as a man while on Earth.
So why do we continually read statements like this?
It was at this time that He went off to the mountain to pray, and He spent the whole night in prayer to God. And when day came, He called His disciples to Him and chose twelve of them, whom He also named as apostles. (Luke 6:12-13)
He chose solitude and communion with His Father over sleep. And He was constantly doing this. It was not an aberration but his daily habit. We find Him praying when He was sad and troubled, when He was glad, when He needed direction (such as choosing His team), and when miracles were performed through Him. The secret to His God-initiated life was His constant conversation with God. And we often find Him getting alone for extended times with the Father.
In the early morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house, and went away to a secluded place, and was praying there. (Mark 1:35)
WHY DID PEOPLE TALK TO JESUS?
Can you imagine how wonderful it must have been to be able to talk face-to-face with Jesus during His earthly life? How your heart would be instructed, your mind expanded, your soul thrilled, your life changed? Two men walked with Him on a road and said, “Didn’t our hearts burn within us as He was speaking to us, explaining the Scripture?” (Luke 24:32).
Thousands wanted to get to Jesus. They swarmed around Him to hear His Word, for no one said the things He said or did what He could do. They sought the wisdom, salvation, and healing that flowed from Him. Peter once said, “Lord, where else can we go? You have the words of life” (John 6:68).
Just as people wanted to talk to Jesus because He gave them what they could find nowhere else, so the man, Jesus, constantly wanted to talk with His Father. Everything He needed was there. We do not know all that happened, but these prayers must have been filled with honest, seeking, learning hours of two-way conversation. Jesus knew His life and ministry depended upon this counsel. It was never a last resort but the joyful, constant practice of his life. As a man, He wanted to talk with God, just like others wanted to talk with Him.
In the same measure, these are all things that the Father wants you to experience with Him in prayer. But you must see the value and come to Him.
…. keeps us from praying. We think we know better. And we’re often unaware. We’ve rarely seen others who pray like Jesus and don’t recognize the difference. And in this arrogance and unawareness, we miss the heart of what life was intended to be and can be.
If you don’t know how to pray, learn. Ask Jesus to mentor you. He lived in prayer as a man, and He will show you. Read the Scripture. Read books on prayer (we have several on this website). Find others who seem to pray and learn from them. Don’t let momentary failures in prayer deter you. But, most importantly, ask the Lord to return prayer to its rightful place in your values. If you will, you will begin to live the highest life and know the greatest joy.
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