“I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them.” – 1 Timothy 2:1.
How important is prayer? The Bible would seem to indicate that it is very important. Take the early church: Acts 2: 42 says, “All the believers devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, and to fellowship, and to sharing in meals (including the Lord’s Supper and to prayer.“ And in Acts 4, when Peter and John were wrongfully arrested and then set free, the church prayed. “When they heard the report, all the believers lifted their voices together in prayer to God…After this prayer, the meeting place shook, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit. Then they preached the word of God with boldness.” (Acts 4: 24, 31)
When most people think about prayer, they often think of a big list of things they want to ask God to do for them. Or maybe they think of those long prayers that sound grand. Prayer is simply talking to God: it is simply talking to God in order to grow in our relationship with Jesus and to grow in our love and loyalty to Him. If Jesus himself spent time in prayer when He was here on earth, how much more do we need to open our hearts to commune with the Lord? If such times of communion have been missing from your life, you can begin today.
So when and how do we pray? First, have a set time and place for where you will pray. This helps you to stay consistent and to create a habit of spending time with God and making space to grow in your relationship with Him. The reality is we make time for the things that are important in our lives. We should fight to make time for God on a daily basis. You may also want to consider a prayer list. A prayer list establishes what and who to pray for.
We need to remember not only what God has done but who He is. God is a loving Father, who loves to see you grow and doesn’t expect you to be perfect on day one. He loves every time that you come to Him, He loves every moment that you sit and spend time with Him, so when you know that, it changes everything.
Prayer is a privilege. But that privilege is not limited to a morning quiet time. Don’t underestimate the power of a 10-second prayer where you are just thanking Him and talking to Him throughout the day.
When we pray, God moves on our behalf. Prayer must be the foundation of everything we do if we desire to see God move. It needs to be ingrained in our daily lives, becoming our first response and not our last resort.
- Have you ever needed to pray about something but just didn’t know how? How did you overcome this obstacle?
- God cares most about our prayer attitude. Think about a time when you came to Him with an attitude of desperation, repentance, or humility. How did God respond?