I decided in January this year to strive for a deeper relationship with my creator. Being on fire for God as I was, I was eager to start the journey to a closer walk with God. You know when people throw out this pat statements or these automatic responses it is hard to grasp the true meaning of “closer walk” or draw me nearer” or “praise God”. My mind does a quick calculation and dismisses it as an involuntary response to something seen or heard that is more cerebral than heartfelt. How do I connect with the walk. How can I be drawn nearer. How do I praise God not simply with my mouth in a congregation at church.
I look forward to prayer at church, and I pray every morning and night and several times in the day. This world is so near the end that I believe that it is suicide to leave your bedroom, or bathroom in the morning without prayer. Satan is angry and the war is almost over. We therefore need God’s protection and we need to give Him thanks for life, repentance, and forgiveness. We need to pray also to remind ourselves that God is in control, not us and without Him we are lost.
But prayer is difficult.
A pastor once said that we were not created to pray. We were not created to close our eyes and bow our heads and speak to God in an apparent one sided conversation. We were created to speak with God face to face. Adam and God actually hung out and talked about all kinds of things. Although we do not know how long Adam and Eve existed on Earth before sin, but we understand that God regularly visited personally and they would normally have time together. We know God and Adam discussed what to call the animals and I am sure the creator and the created man had lots to talk about face to face. But sin has separated us from God. In Genesis 4:26 it says that men began to call on the name of the lord. From a perfect world where man could go and speak with God face to face in chapter 2 of Genesis, to chapter 4 of Genesis where men have been so separated from God through sin that we now communicate in this way.
My prayer life is good. I speak with my savior all day long most days. While driving, cooking, shopping, in the shower. But then came the prayer challenge that I have still not gotten comfortable with. I pray for God’s help to make my prayer life more complete. This challenge has to do with prayer with my wife. Not just saying grace at dinner or lunch, but prayer before we open the Bible together, or prayer to welcome the Sabbath or prayer for someone who is sick or having live struggles.
Perhaps it is a shyness, or self consciousness. I know that these excuses mean that my focus is on myself and not God. But this is a difficulty for me. My wife broke the prayer impasse this week in our Bible study. Quite unexpected she took us beyond the prayer-less study to one that prayer is expected. Her prayer was simple, inviting God’s presence as we studied his word and for understanding of His word. The completeness and the blessing that it has had is remarkable. Since then, we have both prayed with the other present. It is getting easier but still stressful.
I look forward to a day when prayer with my wife and family is a normal part of the day. And we all look forward to when prayer is not necessary because I will see and speak to God face to face.