Water for the Thirsty
Weekly Devotional

Water for the Thirsty

Prayer Is Not Easy

Weekly Devotional

‘As the deer pants for streams of water so my soul pants for you, O God’. (Psalm 42:1)
‘…Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, "If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink”…’ (John 7:37)

15th January 2012

Prayer is not easy for me. There we are I’ve admitted it. In fact it’s a real challenge.

It is easier, of course, to talk God when I want something, or I’m in trouble, but to engage in regular and consistent conversation with my Father in heaven, well that’s another matter.

After all it can feel rather unnatural to have a conversation with someone you can’t see, or touch, and who doesn’t often talk back. This is why I’m particularly pleased, and very grateful, for the Bible’s portrayal of the disciples.

They acknowledged that they didn’t really know how to pray (Luke 11:1) and despite Jesus urging them to be attentive and be with Him in His hour of greatest need, they still drifted off into sleep prior to Jesus’ arrest and trial. (Matthew 26:36–46)

If like me you struggle when it comes to prayer, don’t make it worse by beating yourself up or feeling that there’s something inherently wrong with you. The struggle to pray is simply a part of the human condition.

This is why I’m also grateful for the Bible saying:

‘In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God’. (Romans 8:26–27)

In these verses I think God is acknowledging that prayer is a tough job, which it is not easy, and sometimes it is just hard work.

So let me encourage you to keep at it, even when you don’t know what to say, for this is when the Spirit will step in and take over for us, and that is incredibly comforting as well as liberating.

Why not start with this simple prayer,

Father, teach me how to pray. In conscious devotion, casual conversation and reflection help me to walk and talk with You.

Have a good week praying to your Father.

Pastor Barry

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