Wednesday, November 1, 2017

"The Quality of Prayer"

"The Quality of Prayer"

    Enough?  Or well enough?  Regarding prayer, we must be sure to answer this question in accordance with God's truth and emphasis.

    "And this is the confidence that we have in Him, that, if we ask any thing according to His will, He heareth us" (I John 5:14).
    "But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking" (Matthew 6:7).

   At the end of our lives, the question will not revolve around quantity of fellowship with God, but rather the quality of how we walked with Him.  Of course, this is not to argue against consistent and regular prayer.  Through the Lord Jesus Christ, born again believers have 24/7 "access by one Spirit unto the Father" (Ephesians 2:18).  We can pray anywhere and everywhere with much confidence as long as were make our approach with a humble, trusting heart submitted to the glory and will of God.  What a gift, and surely we desire to avail ourselves of conscious relationship with the One of whom the Psalmist declared, "In Thy presence is fullness of joy.  At Thy right hand there are pleasures forevermore" (Psalm 16:11).

    Still, as with every aspect of the Christian life, we do well to attend to the matter of quality rather than quantity in our prayers.  To pray merely for prayer's sake is an empty exercise that does us no good, and may in fact do great harm.  How easily we deceive ourselves when performing apparently spiritual activities that may involve little more than "vain repetitions."  The God who "looketh on the heart" is not impressed by much speaking that does nor originate in His Spirit's working in our hearts, and our genuine response thereunto (I Samuel 16:7).  Thus, we must determine to pray well rather than much, as led by the Holy Spirit and the Word of God.  In many, this may lead to greater quantity of fellowship with our Heavenly Father as the blessing of reality bestows the quality of His glorious presence and working in our hearts.  However, some may find what seems to be a bit of paring down the abundance of words that in the past may have been uttered merely to satisfy themselves rather than please God.

    Prayer constitutes a sublime gift of grace in Christ wherein God bestows Himself to trusting hearts.  "God hath sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying Abba Father" (Galatians 4:6).  The Lord Jesus suffered and died to make possible relationship and fellowship with our Heavenly Father.  The last thing we want to do is trivialize the blessedness by viewing the gift according to fleshly and devilish parameters that bear no real spiritual substance.  Acknowledging our native tendencies in the matter, and then trusting our Lord to lead and enable us to pray well, goes far in establishing and maintaining the quality of prayer in both our hearts and the practice of walking with God in Truth.

"The effectual, fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much."
(James 5:16)

Weekly Memory Verse
   Being confident of this very thing, that He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.
(Philippians 1:6)

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