Titus 2:11-13

"For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men, instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus."

Monday, October 13, 2008

The Practice of Prayer

I don't pray as much as I should.  There, I said it.  There are several things currently happening in my life that have driven me to pray and praise more; but as my heart becomes more aligned with God's through prayer, I am seeing how short I am falling when it comes to talking to my Father.

There are some things I've noticed about prayer in my life personally: 
  1. that the more I pray, the more I desire to pray;
  2. that prayer makes my heart soft towards God; 
  3. and that praying teaches me of my dependence upon God.  
So why don't I pray more?  Often times when I am examining myself, it is my prayerlessness that God shows me.  This isn't to say that I lead a prayer-less life.  But I'm not sure to what extent I'd call it a prayer-full life, either.  Regardless, God is calling me to pray more.

In Christian circles, prayer is often referred to as a discipline.  According to thefreedictionary.com, discipline is defined as "training expected to produce a specific character or pattern of behavior."  In addition, common experience tells us that discipline involves time, energy, and commitment.  So, God is training me through various trials, conversations, sermons, and circumstances to become more prayerful.  But in order for that training to produce the desired character or behavior (i.e. prayerfulness), I must put forth the time, energy, and commitment to pray.

Undoubtedly, this is a hard thing to do.  This world (i.e. Satan) is in opposition to prayer and to God.  But God who calls us to pray can teach, motivate, and enable us to pray!  Praying, which is communicating with our Abba Father ("Daddy"), accomplishes at least a couple things:
  1. it deepens our relationship with God,
  2. and it aligns our hearts with God's.
So no wonder Satan doesn't want us to pray, right?!

Needless to say, I think I have the necessary knowledge of prayer; but it is the greater practice of prayer which God is calling me to.  May He grant me the desire and the discipline to pray, and may He continue to align my heart with His as I communicate with Him!


Melissa Ulrickson said...

I'm right there with you, Angela!!

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