The good news is that you can pray. Anyone can pray. Prayer is accessible; prayer is possible. We were originally wired to communicate with God so it is already part of our makeup. The wires may need to be detangled and reconnected, but God is able to do all that and more. Anyone with a mind and a mouth can pray. It is simply talking to God. When people say they cannot pray, they are not thinking of mumbling to God as I did those many years ago in the chapel. They are thinking of the ‘powerful’, vocal praying they hear other Christians pray or the long hours that some people put into prayer.
Many years ago I counselled a couple who had just come to Christ, and I encouraged them to begin to pray together. The man was very reluctant to pray with his wife, as she was very eloquent in prayer and he could barely speak. He felt inadequate, and it seemed as if prayer was just not his thing. Shortly after, as he grew spiritually – receiving prayer and attending prayer meetings regularly – he lost his initial inhibitions and became very active, very vocal in prayer.
Everyone can pray. You can pray. But why must you pray?
Why should you pray?
We also pray because God commands us to pray. It is not a suggestion, but a clear-cut instruction from God’s Word. We are told to ‘Pray continually’ (1 Thessalonians 5.17). Jesus Himself had a very vibrant prayer life, so much so that His disciples pleaded with Him to teach them to pray. And on several occasions He gave instructions on how to pray.
Quite obviously, we are expected to pray. Prayer is obedience to Christ, and prayerlessness is disobedience.
Colossians 4.2 says,‘ Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful’.
It is not a recreational activity, something we do for relaxation or if we have time on our hands. It is one of the two most important things we can do with our time. God requires us to pray.
‘I want men everywhere to lift up holy hands in prayer, without anger or disputing’ (1 Timothy 2.8).
The fruits of prayer
We are required to pray because we have need of the fruits of prayer –
- the fruit of intimacy, love shared with God;
- the fruit of revelation of truth;
- the fruit of character transformation and
- the fruit of freedom from demonic bondage and
- breakthrough in our lives.
We are instructed to pray because we sorely need to pray. For God to move on our behalf, prayer must be made. For us to know God’s purpose and direction for our lives – and to follow that purpose accurately – prayer must be made.
Prayer and the plan of God
Every good plan of God for us must emerge from the womb of prayer. We pray to release God’s power into our circumstances and the circumstances around us.
We pray because God has work to do that can only be done through prayer. Prayer is more than fellowship and self-maintenance. It is about winning victories for God, conquering opposition, destroying adversity, and bringing to bear the will of God in a particular situation. It is about partnering with God to set people free of affliction, to bring healing and deliverance.
It is about influencing the course of history in line with the will of God. God requires His people to pray because it is His invitation into the earth to change things. How many things that God desires to do on earth are hindered because His people fail to pray? We can have the privilege of being God’s agents to save people from untimely death or other disasters when we pray.
We pray because it is commanded of us, because it is a privilege to pray, and because it is highly beneficial to us personally and to other people. Happy are those who live in the company of praying men and women, happy are those who are praying men and women. If prayer is this useful, how then should one pray? And can everyone pray this kind of life saving prayer?
This article is an excerpt from the book ‘An Eye to the Crown’ .
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