“…be constant in prayer.” -Romans 12:12c
When it comes to prayer, the natural mindset of the flesh is that prayer is a waste of time. There’s an old saying, “Two hands working can do more than a thousand clasped in prayer.” In the life of unbelievers, prayer is viewed either as a complete waste of time or as a spiritual exercise no different than yoga meditation. Many fail to see how Christian prayers are distinct from Muslim prayers, Buddhist prayers, or Catholic prayers.
I worry that although Christians would never verbally say such things, nevertheless, their lifestyle communicates that prayer is worthless. Ask yourself when the last time you spent serious time in prayer? Have you honestly been in the practice of praying as a spiritual discipline? Are you faithfully reading the best works of the Reformers and Puritans, growing in the knowledge of God without fellowshipping with your God?
How many of us put prayer off because we are so “busy”. Prayer is not a distraction or deviation from the duties of the child of God. Prayer is not a secondary “maybe we will get to it someday” obligation of the believer. Child of God let me simply ask you, for what purpose were you made? Did God elect you, create you, make atonement for your sins, and regenerate your heart so you could be a cog in a machine fulfilling your own purposes? Did God not save for the glory of His own name? Is God not the final joy and prize of your life?
A life lived devoid of prayer is always marked by selfishness. We fail to pray when we see ourselves more highly then we ought. We fail to prayer because we actually think ourselves capable of fulfilling our duties on our own. We have forgotten that it is God who gives us breath.
As I have stated, prayer is fellowship with God. A prayerful heart is the result of the working Holy Spirit. The child who loves God is expected to desire fellowship with Him. Prayer is one of the greatest privileges of the believer. It is one of God’s greatest gift to His children alongside Bible reading, fellowship with believers, and the ordinances of the church. It would be better to sleep on the sidewalk naked and starving with a prayer life than to have all the riches in the world and God refusing to hear you
To say the Protestant Reformer, Martin Luther, was a busy man would be an understatement. The man was in the middle of a revolution. He was one of the leading spearheads used of God to reform the church in the 15th century. The man was a reformer, pastor, husband, writer, and debater. Yet, this busy reformer is famously quoted saying, “I have so much to do that I shall spend the first three hours in prayer.”
The Prophet Daniel was a lead administrator in both the Babylonian and Persian empire and yet that man prayed three times a day. The great evangelist George Whitfield would spend time in fellowship with God on his knees into the late hours of the night. Our Lord and Savior Christ Himself prayed long and often. Should we not imitate our Lord and do likewise?
I encourage you, believer, to pray. Get on your knees before God and fellowship with Him. Know the joy of God. Embrace fellowship with your heavenly Father. Know that at the Cross of Calvary peace was won for us through Christ. We ought to take full advantage of Christ death and pray to the Father who loves and hears us.
“Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God.” – Romans 5:1-2.