Let me be honest with you. I don’t like working out. Matter of fact, I hate every sort of physical exercise. If you ever see me in a gym, it’s probably because a friend of mine dragged me there and there was no way I could have said no. I know it’s not a healthy way of living. I will maybe one day get to the point where I’m mature enough to enjoy physical training and all that sort of thing…
When I think about prayer as a spiritual exercise, that lazy part of me just wants one thing, to stay away. Stay longer in bed in the morning until I just have enough time to get ready and rush to work; stay longer on my computer or phone until I’m exhausted and then directly go to bed.
In the morning, Lord, you hear my voice;in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait expectantly.
I really think it takes getting another understanding of Prayer for it to become a lifestyle. It all starts with one question.
Who do we pray to?
He is our King
As Christians, we pray to the one and only God, owner of the universe, Bigger than we could even imagine. Please get this straight. He is not a power or a sort of energy that you use to get whatever you want. He is a Person, meaning you can talk to him the same way you would talk to a human being. But it’s important here to remind ourselves to come with reverence, not forgetting that He really is the King of kings. A King that we have the honor of getting direct access to. What a privilege!
He is our Father
Through Jesus-Christ, we have the grace of becoming sons and daughters of the Most-High God. As such, prayer is a means of communicating with our Father in heaven. We’ve got such a loving Father, who cares about every single detail of our life. He wants us to share them with Him in prayers. He is ready to listen and to give us advice through His Word.
He is our Provider
Something particularly thrills and challenges me in the Bible. In the book of Genesis, when God asks for Abraham to sacrifice his one and only son Isaac, on the way to the mountain, Isaac asks his father where the lamb for the burnt offering was. Abraham’s answer just makes me want to scream in awe! Abraham answered, “God himself will provide the lamb for the burnt offering, my son.”
He knew God would make a way!
So Abraham called that place The Lord Will Provide. And to this day it is said, “On the mountain of the Lord it will be provided.”
The Bible is full of amazing stories of God showing up in extreme situations. Trust me when I say you definitely can look to God for any situation you are in right now. He literally said Himself that He will provide.
And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.
2 Corinthians 9:8
The same way children look to parents (in a healthy family) to provide for their needs, we can turn to our heavenly Father and have this assurance that when we call upon His Name, He will answer.
Why do we pray?
We pray in order to have a consistent relationship with God.
We pray because it’s the way Jesus taught us to communicate with our Father. It is the best way to enter into an intimate relationship with Him.
We pray because we acknowledge that we cannot accomplish anything of eternal significance with our human finite means. We need the wisdom and knowledge of God in order for us to accomplish His great plan for the whole world. Simply said, we discover His purpose for our life, by spending time with Him, asking Him to tell us clearly what we are supposed to do.
We pray because we are in a war against the kingdom of darkness. As believers in Jesus-Christ, we belong to the Kingdom of God. We are on the Light’s side. We have one mission; it is to let our light shine for all to see how good our God is. But this mission comes with oppositions. We can only prevail against them by fighting the battle on our knees. Meaning, praying. Pleading the blood of Jesus for protection. Decreeing God’s authority over our life.
How do we pray?
Prayer is simply talking to God. We share our hearts with Him. Our thoughts, our feelings, our desires, what makes us sad, and what makes us happy.
We tell Him how great He is over everything we are going through. We worship Him for Who He revealed Himself to be, not only through the pages of the Bible but also in our personal lives.
We partner with Him in order for His will to be done in our lives and in the lives of people around us by interceding for them.
God is our friend and by talking to Him, we get deeper and closer to Him.
Prayer is also taking time to listen to God. It’s not a one-way dialogue. God has so much insight to give us… By taking time, remaining quiet in His presence, we get to hear His voice.
We pray in the name of Jesus
Of our own, we do not deserve anything. God is holy and we are sinful. The only way we have access to Him is through His Son Jesus. By His blood, we are made righteous. We can come to the Father and enjoy the blessings of His presence in the name of Jesus.
Through confessing our sin and our mistakes, both known and unknown, we allow the blood of the sinless, spotless Jesus, the Son of God to purify us and qualify us to come to our heavenly Father.
Closing our prayers in the name of Jesus is a kind of divine seal we are putting on our prayers.
And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.”
I hope this helps you want to spend more time being with the Lord, share your heart with Him. It is what this is all about. Stepping into this love story with the Lord, letting Him discover you, just the way you are. Share your passions and desire with Him. Share the ugly sides of your life with Him.
That is prayer.
And the more often you set aside time to pray, you suddenly become more alert to the spiritual things. You become sensitive to the Lord. You mature and develop your inner man. You have clarity on what you are supposed to do in every situation of your life. You become more in love with the one who loves you so much that He chose to die upon a cross. Just to have your heart. Isn’t that beautiful?