Our Greatest Motivation to Pray
The Bible is replete with commands like this, urging us to pray without pause. This might sound like an overwhelming expectation, and we may wonder whether we could ever meet it, or even desire to. But perhaps if we see our need more clearly, we will be motivated to pray more consistently.
Our need for prayer becomes most obvious when we understand that our Lord Jesus Christ Himself believed in the absolute necessity of prayer. At the beginning of Mark’s Gospel, we have this account of Jesus: “Rising very early in the morning, while it was still dark, he departed and went out to a desolate place, and there he prayed” (Mark 1:35). Even for the Son of God, prayer was important enough business to attend to early and not to allow the demands of the day to intrude upon.
Jesus knew that “he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed” (Matthew 16:21). Even so, in the Garden of Gethsemane we overhear Him praying for the cup of God’s wrath to pass from Him if it is His Father’s will (Matthew 26:39; Mark 14:36; Luke 22:42). The Son of God clearly knew that He needed to go before His Father. The writer to the Hebrews summarizes it perfectly for us: “In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to him who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverence” (Hebrews 5:7).
Surely it cannot be that prayer was a necessity for Jesus and yet is simply optional for us. If anything, it must be the very reverse! If the Son of God Himself needed to spend time concentrated on prayer to His Father, then how much more does the one who follows after Christ! Prayer is simply too great a privilege for any Christian to ignore and too great a necessity for any of us to neglect. So, ask His Spirit to show you the wonder of prayer and to help you enter into it. When you recognize that there is no end to God’s capacity to help or His willingness to do so, and that there is no moment in which you do not need His help, you will find yourself “praying at all times.”
How is God calling me to think differently?
How is God reordering my heart’s affections — what I love?
What is God calling me to do as I go about my day today?
Prayer for Spiritual Strength
14For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, 15from whom every family3 in heaven and on earth is named, 16that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, 19and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.
20Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, 21to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.
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