Renewal Reading—May 14

by mjongsma on May 14, 2013

Praying Like it All Depends on God

Read

Psalm 141; Revelation 8:3-4; Isaiah 56:7

Focus

Psalm 141:2: Accept my prayer as incense offered to you, and my upraised hands as an evening offering.

Consider

The third item in the Holy Place was the golden Altar of Incense. This stood in front of the curtain that separated the Holy Place from the Holy of Holies. John’s Revelation says that the smoke from the incense carries our prayers to God (Revelation 8:2-4). How do you view your prayer time? Is it it duty? Is it drudgery? Is it demanding from God? As the incense was offered every morning and evening, so we should consistently and intentionally seek God in prayer. It must be from a desperate heart that seeks God’s face; from a wandering heart that needs God’s guidance; from a dependent heart that desires God’s justice; from a needy heart that requires God’s protection. Prayer should not come from a place of arrogant confidence that orders God to meet our needs. Prayer is an act of surrender that says to God, “Help me because I cannot do anything without you!” Prayer should not be seen as an add-on to our faith, but as a life-giving essential without which we cannot function.

Reflect

When you are feeling dependent and helpless, what kinds of words do you use in your prayers?

Pray

Father I confess that I don’t always pray like I cannot live and work without you. Help me to pray, not because I want the stuff you can give me, but because I want you.

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