By Edd Sterchi
If we would be honest with ourselves, we will admit that we all could improve our personal prayer lives. Maybe remembering a few important principles will help.
It Is Not Motion in Prayer, but Emotion in Prayer That Is Important. Jesus’ example in prayer was one of thanksgiving (John 11:41), humility, righteousness, emotion (Matt 26:36-44), solitude (Mark 1:35), forgiveness (Luke 23:34), believing, and on behalf of others (John 17). It is important to pour it all out before God when we pray.
It Is Not Frequency in Prayer, but Attitude in Prayer That Is Important. We can follow the attitude that Christ had in His prayers. His main emphasis in prayer was that God’s will be done (Matt. 26:42). If we worship God properly and do His will, we can be assured that He will hear and answer our prayers (1 John 3:22).
It Is Not What We Have, but That We Have God (and Can Go to Him in Prayer) That Is Important. If a Christian has nothing else, he needs to remember that he always has prayer as a connection to his Maker. Prayer is about faith, worship, confession, adoration, praising God, thanksgiving, making requests, and inner health. Praise is a natural outgrowth of our faith in God (Psa. 105:2), and prayer is an important part of our faith in God. How wonderful that we can turn to Him in prayer at any time!
It Is Not the Giving of Prayer, but the Giving of Self in Prayer That Is Important. In Psa. 109:4, David proclaims that he always gave himself to prayer. It didn’t matter how many enemies he had or what situation he was in, David always gave himself to prayer. The idea of giving oneself in prayer is that of a 100% commitment. No matter what condition arises (or doesn’t arise), we need to take time, thought, dedication, commitment, and readiness to pray.
We need to rest assured that God is there, that He is concerned about our needs, and that He answers prayer – that’s what’s important. Knowing that, maybe we should spend more time in sincere, personal prayer to Him. “The LORD has heard my supplication; The LORD will receive my prayer” (Psa. 6:9).
- Edd Sterchi preaches for the Broadway Church of Christ in Campbellsville, KY. He may be contacted through the congregation's website: http://www.broadwaychurchofchrist.net/