The Lord is near to all who call upon Him, to all who call upon Him in truth.
I want to give you three words to discover the secret to powerful praying. Number one: consistent. Do not fall into the trap of thinking that if you do not have an hour to pray, then you cannot be effective in prayer. Remember 1 Thessalonians 5:17: “Pray without ceasing.” Make praying a habit. Before your feet touch the ground in the morning: “God, help me to honor You today.” As you go into an important meeting: “Lord, give me the words to say.” As you deal with a difficult circumstance: “Lord, help me.” Pray throughout the day and before you go to sleep at night. Let the last words you say or think be a prayer to God thanking Him for the good things of the day and confessing any mistakes you have made. Be consistent.
Number two: specific. Be specific in what you say to God. I used to think people who wrote out their prayers had to be the most unspiritual people in the world. When somebody would subtly pull out a piece of paper before praying in front of the congregation, I would think, “He is so out of the habit of praying that he has to write out his prayers!” But now I appreciate this practice. I don’t know about you, but it is easy for my mind to wander. Many times I will type out my prayers to God so I can be specific. If you do not want to write out your prayers, at least try vocalizing them. It will help you pray more specifically.
Number three: honest. C. S. Lewis said when we pray, “we must lay before Him what is in us, not what ought to be in us.” Be honest with God. Is there something you really want? Tell Him about it, and leave it to His wisdom to decide whether to give it to you. Are you angry with somebody? Tell God about it. Are you disappointed in God? Tell Him of your disappointment–His shoulders are broad enough to take it. Pray what is in your heart, not what you think should be in your heart. Prayer is open, honest, specific communication with the One who loves you.
A few years ago, I stopped by the White House to see the president. When I walked into the Oval Office, he was with a highly decorated general. The president said, “You know, General, when you think about it, Robert is more powerful than you are.” The look on the general’s face said, “What in the world are you talking about?” But the president continued, “Just think about it: every day, Robert talks to the one who controls everything that happens in this universe.” He was right. But that privilege is not reserved for pastors, popes, or priests; it is available to every true child of God. And when we enter the throne room of God, we are talking to the one who made us and loves us most in this universe. That is the power of prayer.
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “Straight Talk About Your Prayer Life” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2022.
C. S. Lewis, “Letters to Malcolm: Chiefly on Prayer” (New York: HarperOne, 2017), 27.
Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved. www.lockman.org