You're a pastor, and yet you still struggle with prayer. What advice would you give to fellow pastors or longtime Christians about enriching their prayer lives?

I do and I don’t. I don’t often struggle to pray, because intimacy with God has become part of my lifestyle. But I do struggle in prayer.

True men and women of prayer will sometimes wrestle in prayer, as did many figures in the Bible, like Jacob’s symbolic wrestling with the angel and Jesus’ wrestling over his fate in Gethsemane.

Like anyone else, I struggle with unanswered prayer or major decisions to do something by faith, when tragedy strikes, problems of injustice, and healings that take a lot longer than I’d like. The key is to keep struggling—don’t give up and too quickly assume something is God’s will before you know for sure. The angel commended Jacob for not giving up until he got a blessing. God the Father actually sent an angel to help Jesus wrestle in Gethsemane. Sometimes wrestling in prayer is God’s will for us.

Wrestling in prayer is a good thing. It draws us closer to God. And it changes us in the process.

Peter, please write a prayer you would hope every pastor reading this interview will pray in faith...

Father, you love me so much. Sometimes the demands and heartaches of doing your work drain me. Rejuvenate me with your presence. Fill me with your Spirit as I lift my hands to you. My life and my ministry are in your hands. I choose to keep it there and trust you to lead me and bless me so I will always be a blessing to others. I will pursue every vision you’ve given me and overcome every hardship that intrudes, because, Lord Jesus, I walk in your footsteps. Your victory is mine. Lead me to live it every day. Amen.

Original publication date: February 5, 2009