by Dr. Charles Stanley
Monday January 9, 2006
Learning to Pray the
God wants His children to ask for what is on their heart because He delights to give. But even more than that, He wants to fellowship with us. What joy can be ours every time we meet our heavenly Father through our prayers!
The privilege of supplication rests on our relationship with God through His Son Jesus Christ. Only those who are part of God’s family can claim Him as their Father (John 14:6) and avail themselves of His pledge to answer prayer. He makes no such commitment to unbelievers. The single exception is the sinner who asks for forgiveness and receives Christ as Savior and Lord. His prayer is always answered with salvation as promised (Romans 10:9).
In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus uses three verbs to describe prayer: ask, seek, and knock. Notice the progression in intensity from a request to a search and then to further action. Prayer is more than giving God requests. It involves seeking after His will to guide our entreaties. It means “knocking on doors” by exploring different solutions and obtaining godly counsel to help determine our Lord’s mind. Jesus pledged that we will receive, we will find, and God will open the door. We have His assurance that the Lord will respond and that what He does is good.
Prayer is simple, yet we find it hard to practice at times. We try different methods but often feel dissatisfied and wonder if our prayers are having any effect. Ask the Lord to teach you more about biblical praying; put into practice what you learn, and wait in assurance for His answers!