Psalms 109:4 “For my love they are my adversaries: but I give myself unto prayer.”
There are times when I have given myself wholly to worldly things; yet, they yielded so little fruit. Then there were spirtual things in which I was only half-hearted, that if I had applied myself, would have yielded great fruit.
Fear is one of the greatet hinderances to us getting anything done for the kingdom of God. I can remember clearly a time when as a teenager, I spent hours consumed in some activity in my room.
When I came up for air, I saw that I had spent hours thinking, pondering, ruminating about a certain thing, idea or activity. Fear arose that I wouldn’t be in control of the time spent thinking and I decided I wouldn’t do that again.
Looking back I think; ‘How foolish!’
I would rather have perfected the art of meditation than to have left it so early in life.
Letting go of the things that distract or divide our attention in all things spiritual is advantageous to gaining greater insight, deeper truth and better understanding of the Word of God.
There is so much to distract us. Whether the billboards as we drive, the commercials with television programming, the ads and banners on the websites we visit or the constant dinging on our phones of texts, emails and posts on social media.
All are seemingly pushed to the forefront of our minds and the weightier things of God are left to sit idle until we deem them important.
I find it amazing that people cannot be quiet anymore.
To sit and be alone with your thoughts is scary to some. Our inability to process our thoughts or think through a situation or circumstance without searching the internet to find what others think or what the majority of people chose.
When it comes to prayer; here is an activity the requires the utmost focus of every one of our faculties. E. M. Bounds said this about prayer:
“Prayer is the channel through which all good flows to men. Prayer is a privilege. Prayer is a duty, an obligation most binding, and most imperative, which should hold us to it. But prayer is more than a privilege, more than a duty. It is the appointed condition of getting God’s aid. It is the avenue through which God supplies man’s wants.”
It is when we absolutely need an answer that we come to God with such expectation. In my mind, I often think God says to me;
“It took all this for you to come to Me… and now you want Me to do it right away?”
Cynical? Possibly. Applying human elements to His divine nature is not a good practice. But to think light or make light of prayer is almost a slap in the face of God. God purchased for us in the person of Jesus Christ, the opportunity to come directly to the throne of God with our petitions.
His death, burial and resurrection bought for us the way to have our prayers answered – but something far more important. The ability for me to have a conversation with the God of Heaven is utterly amazing!
The creature talking with the Creator. The thing formed conversing with the One who formed me. Having my prayers move the hand of the Almighty is an awesome thought!
Those things that hinder my prayers; fear, doubt, distraction, busyness, worry, apathy, distress, lack of knowledge of who God is, or selfish desires and pleasure; all can not only hinder, but kill a prayer life.
If it mattered to God to be the first thing He took care of after the work of salvation was completed, then it should matter to us to not take it lightly, approach it haphazardly or leave it off altogether.
Matthew 27:50-51 “Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost. And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent;”
Can you picture it?
Hands reaching down from Heaven to tear the veil in two. The way had been made for man to go to God unhindered no longer needing the Levitical priesthood. Jesus became our High Priest.
We must let go of those things that take away our prayer life and put all our energy and focus into making the time we spend profitable.
Purpose to do this sometime this week:
- Set aside about an hour of time for prayer.
- Turn off all technology.
- Remove all distractions
- Acquire a clean slate with God – 1 John 1:9 – Any and all sin confessed and cleansed
- Quiet yourself and begin the conversation with praise and thanksgiving
- Then ask what it is He would have you pray for…
- Ask how to pray for that which He directs
- Listen as the Holy Spirit guides you
- Always remember to pause and wait for Him to respond
- End with a time of praise and thanksgiving
Prayer is the Christian’s channel to power, provision, protection and peace. It means to much for us to take it lightly.