Almost hate to keep harping at this but, do try a search here on prayer. There is just a tremendous resource that I am sure will be helpful to everyone and anyone.Prayer is a battle often times, maybe most of the time and any number of reasons for that. Sometimes a struggle to start, a struggle to stay, quieting the mind, subduing the flesh, being still, silent even...But even in recent days have found the same as mentioned here. I must be in prayer, upon awakening or forget it. The marked difference as the day progress's, it is sheer foolishness. Will get by alright and the prayer is still 'ceaseless' in the right sense, but the closet is a must, if I neglect that, I have betrayed the Lord His opportunity and my own possibilities of being of any use to Him.But it is not duty. And it is not rote. It is a compelling and a must, a desire and thus far an understanding, even if difficult to express.I know this is towards the question "Do you struggle to pray?" Yes and no would be the reply. Generally it amounts to rebellion and a denying of what the Holy Spirit is calling to. I think we know it deep down inside, the promptings and calm drawing that is never coerced. There are those times when I choose to go ahead and do that which is more pleasing in the moment, to read Scripture or even to come here first and glean or to trick myself into believing that is what I think I am doing. When I know the prompting is to be on my face. We can be quite clever in our choosing even while recognizing or subduing that which we know is there. Still fall into the trap.Mostly though, would say the only method is not one. Just to begin. To ask. Where to go? Where to start? What is the Lords thought? Sometimes it is to read scripture and pray or some bits of a book or devotional, what have you. But always keeping the thoughts towards the Lord and attentive to His leading. To stop where you sense to and just pray silently, drawing out things, people, places, concerns ... It's endless. I just cannot fathom how we could every exhaust our praying. One of the most important is to get the chattering of the mind under control and that takes work. How often do you find yourself going off on a tangent, peaching whole sermons in your head and suddenly realizing that you are not talking to anyone but yourself? I still do it often enough and it will dawn on me, ah here I am bound up in my own thoughts and proscriptions. The difference between 'saying' prayers and praying. Praying to God and actually longing to hear from Him. Here is another, simple request; "I don't want to hear myself" and then be silent. Pouring out your heart without words, groaning in the Spirit.This is a vast topic, no it's is not a topic, it is life and blood and soul and spirit. It is a crushing and an exposure of the innermost substance of ourselves. Nothing is hidden and we know it and feel it and mourn for the sins and the omissions and the displeasing elements to the Lord. There has been times when the Lords hand was so heavy, not even in a necessarily specific item or area that I would have thought there would be nothing left, just dust back to the earth. Sounds extreme but have no other way of expressing it. Groaning for this world and it's inhabitants, bound up in an endless falsehood. For the strife and envy and slanderous, anger, hostility towards God and His creation and His love. For the same things that creep up even here in the members that participate on this forum. For my own folly and foolishness in attempting to hold to just some order and contemplation. And failing by doing the exact same thing.You got me going now... It is immense. It is often a warfare with the very demons of hell though they may be far from your conscience mind. Times when a creeping thought from the pit will attempt to intervene amidst praying, the audacity, it's amazing. Surely that in itself sounds super spiritual but it is so. What is it besides our own flesh that would make us reluctant to pray? Why is it that we really don't believe in it's effectual working and the power inherent that causes us to not do it? The subtle "Oh what's the worth in it?" Not something you would say out loud, but it's there, underneath all the coverings and rationality. If there wasn't something to it, why the struggle?There is also great, tremendous times of unspeakable peace and would say that any combination of all these things is possible. Am finding that the Lord is just as He said He is; Beyond our thoughts and our programmed responses and imaginations. Unpredictable. That is the joy of discovery and anticipation that awaits every moment of true praying.Just touching the tip of the whole thing here.
Prayer is relationship.We're told in Heb 4:16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. We cannot come boldly to someone we have not become very familiar with. We dare not.If He hardly hears from us and we barely know His Voice, then we are barely acquaintances.Joh 10:27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.If every thought through-out the day is focused on Christ and we are "casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ, then when the Spirit of God says, 'Drop to your knees and pray for that lady you just met' .... you're there. Many men of God, would talk about knowing the difference when looking out into the Congregations of those who spent their minds on Him all week ... in between Services and those who came famished. The Preacher could draw off of those who already came to Church plugged in and full.When I've gone to certain ones to pray for me ... those who had their thoughts captive to the obedience of Christ, did not need a 'warmer upper' before getting right on with a powerful on spot prayer.It's relationship. Do we lose that relationship at work or school or with certain folks ... then we haven't learned to walk in Him, abiding in the vine, thoughts captive to Him and submitted.I fear if we go beyond what is Written.If we understand and get into Relationship with Him, we are sensitive to the slightest leadings ... whether it be to pray, preach, fast, sleep or don't sleep, witness, be still, however He leads .... otherwise, it is us and it is flesh.And in the end, the melancholia of walking in the flesh will over-ride His Voice or Leading and we are back to strained communications again because we moved away from Him.To 'know' Him, is to know The Shepherd's Voice & follow continuously. Gal 6
I was telling my class the other day that one thing that sometimes keeps me praying harder is the knowledge of what satan is duing.... The enemey is trying to destroy my WIFE, he is trying to destroy my DAUGHTERS, he is trying to destroy my FAMILY, The enemey is trying to destroy ME, he is trying to destroy my CHURCH!!!!IF this wont get us praying nothing will!!!
I can understand this Dom
The family member in the home who skips prayer has given the enemy an open door to come into the home!!
A prayer testimonyHi friends, I have a personal testimony regarding prayer. Since I gave my life to Lord Jesus a little less than 4 years ago, ever since then I was seeking to have a true prayer life. I knew that if I wanted to spend a relationship with our Father, then I have to come to Him in prayer everyday, sharing my heart with Him. I did not want just a 15 minute prayer life because it just seemed very shallow and religious. My reasoning was, If I go to visit someone I love everyday, I dont want to just spend 15 minuets everyday; I want to spend time and enjoy my time with that person, so it may take 1 hour or maybe even more.So, I decided that this is what I will do everyday. The problem was that I just could not do it consistently. Every time I failed, I felt like I let our Father down and I knew I was a failure as a Christian. I decided to listen to sermons regarding prayer, read books regarding prayer and looked for any kind of spiritual guidance in this matter. I made a schedule everyday, tried to discipline myself and many other things so I can have success in prayer. Guess what, after all this effort of learning and planning, I still failed. I asked our Lord why Lord, why am I failing in this area? Am I living in some kind of sin? Please, reveal it to me, whatever it is? I know that any good thing His children ask, He will give. I know that asking our Lord for a prayer life is a very good thing so I knew that He will deliver me from this issue I was having. I also came to this one understanding. There is nothing more I can do on my own to have a prayer life because I tried it all and all of them failed. I learned that only our Lord Jesus can give me victory in this (a true prayer life). On December 31, 2005 I said, here I go again Lord, please help me to have a prayer life, this is the most important thing I seek; how is it possible for me to be your Child without a prayer life. That night, our Lord gave me this message from David wilkerson (The title of the message is Christ-The Searcher of Mens Hearts. http://www.sermonindex.net/modules/mydownloads/visit.php?lid=3011 )I downloaded this message to my computer before that day. I did not even know this message had anything to do with prayer. I just decided to listen to a sermon that night and this is what I listened. It was our Lords message to me. In this sermon, pastor Wilkerson talks about the importiance of prayer and a few other things regarding it.Guess what friends, God answered my prayer that day. He brought me to that wonderful time of prayer everyday. I thank Him everyday because I know without a doubt that it is our Lord who gives me the desire to come to Him everyday in prayer. Thank You Lord Jesus for this gift.HE IS SO WONDERFUL AND AMAZING, ALL GLORY AND PRAISE TO HIM. Arun1Th 5:18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
This is a topic worthy of discussion and contemplation.I have spent a long time struggling with prayer and developing a consistent, vital prayer life.Praise God for brother Arun's testimony! I can attest to the same fact, the our prayers must originate in God. Just like a preacher must get his sermon from the Father of Lights, Who gives every good and perfect gift, so must the pray-er get his prayer from God Himself. Jesus is the true Vine, and we can do nothing, including pray, without Him (John 14:5).Art Katz mentions this principle in Preaching-A Sacred Responsibility Part 2 http://www.sermonindex.net/modules/mydownloads/singlefile.php?lid=10810One book that really affected my prayer life was "With Christ in the School of Prayer" by Andrew Murray. I would definitely recommend it to you. Also, check out David Smithers's sermon, Extreme Prayer, http://www.sermonindex.net/modules/mydownloads/singlefile.php?lid=2888 And there is a great website with writings by Finney, E.M. Bounds, R.A. Torrey (a partner of D.L. Moody) and more that may be of help to you in studying prayer: www.oldlandmarks.com. But as has been said, you have to pray in order to truly learn prayer. You have to get into relationship with the Lover of your soul. It's hard because the flesh will fight against your spiritual desires (Galatians 5:17, 1 Peter 2:14), and the powers of darkness will do whatever they can to stop you from communing with God. Don't be discouraged! You can conquer through Him Who loves you (Romans 8:37), and triumph in Christ (2 Corinthians 2:14). A vibrant prayer life is another of the blessings that Christ purchased for us.I come from a Catholic background, so I can tell you the difference between "saying prayers" (and not even in your own words) and praying.MeAgain, thanks for your wise and powerful words.I hope I said something of value. If nothing else, the Word of God is true and worth your attention.There are lots of resources (believe me, I spent plenty of time trying to learn to pray, drawing from other men's wells), but the best thing to do is get into your Bible and hear what the Spirit is saying to the Church.Your brother in the struggle,D.
Quote: nacl " the Word of God is true and worth your attention."Yes and Amen brother. It's all in there.That's what makes my heart skip a beat and my eyes twinkle someone said, and it's true, His Word is so complete it amazes more and more and more the longer I see it and examine it from every angle my defective old brain can look at it.I love sermons too, but the Pure Word should finish our day and start our day also.One dear old saint named Pastor Ron Marr (he's on the web now too) has always said, come before Him without requests and just admire Who He is and have that time of love and heart of praise for a good while, each and every time, just praise Him.Of course we can bring our petitions when needed, but we need to spend more time not 'asking' but just admiring, is what he meant.Isa 26:3 Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. RonB just brought out that "perfect peace" is shalom~shalom. It's beautiful that we know that, as that is a greeting of some Hebrew folks also. And that "stayed" is to "lean hard".shalom~shalom nacl. :-)
"[i]Put the people to praying[/i]"This is very encouarging to me. To see this being discussed, I pray that we will keep at it as an encouragement to each other.Saints, there is so many repercussions to this. The importance of this matter. So many other difficulties are resolved by just being constant in prayer. Do read up on the past saints, you don't necessarly have to imitate them as much as they will rub off on you. For some, by all means do imitate if that will get you going.As others have pointed out, it can be different for everyone and like most things in this walk it is often at the end of trying everything and coming to a complete end of oursleves that we begin to find. Regardless, go on through with it, whatever it takes. I am becoming convinced it is of the highest order and a mighty noble thing to fervently pray and wage war with principalities and powers, to conquer ones self and to die on a thousand hills for the Captain of our souls.
Why people don't pray.From my own experiencetoo busytoo tiredtoo lazytoo comfortabletoo weakdistractedlack of focusunbeliefapathyafraid of rejectionlack of perserverencecoldnessdeadnesslack of dedicationguilty conciencelack of visionto just name a fewthese should also be reasons why we should pray.