If there is something that I'd like to be better at, it would be prayer. And, according to Luke 11 from verse 1, it's something you can learn. The disciples asked Jesus to teach them, and He did. He gave them and then us; the prayer that most people in the world have heard at some point or other, whether they know Him or not. To many it becomes a bit of a rhyme. I fell into that trap myself many times growing up, and every now and again I seem to be content to climb back in that same hole again. Stupid. Given, I didn't have a relationship with God, but I knew the Lord's Prayer and I knew it verbatim, but understood very little. Jesus' idea of how to address the Father is locked up in His words, and it's a key to intimacy with the Creator of the universe.
We have been given the right, through Jesus, to find quiet moments in the midst of the chaos of life, to 'plug' ourselves into the Creator of the Universe. He is the One who loves us more than we could possibly fathom, the One who knows how to intricately manage the puzzle pieces of our very existence and He never slumbers or sleeps.
(Psalm 121:4) To say prayer is an honour, is simply a ridiculous understatement. Someone has called it the 'breathing of the soul' but to be honest, it's a whole lot less ethereal than that. It's a practical conversation with a God who is both interested in our lives, and working all things for our Good. (Romans 8:28). He wants to see us engaging with Him and asking for what we need. (Philippians 4:6)
It's a time to express our thanks and to just acknowledge God for His goodness and to lift His name in worship. You know how we can sometimes get in the corporate setting on a Sunday; hiding the truth so it continues to look like everything is ok.
There's no space or time for that nonsense when you're alone with God, in your room. It's your space to be raw and exposed, plucking up the courage to show the Father what He can see anyway. We knock off the clichés and the 'Christianese' and we get down to business.
It's funny how vulnerable we become when we realise we can hide nothing.
So prayer is less about the breathing of the soul, and more about baring it; whether in honest desperation or loud proclamation. The way you feel, will dictate your approach to prayer, and that smacks of relationship to me. It's not about what you wear, how you kneel and following a script, but like with any relationship, there's always a better way to say things as you get to know each other better.
This isn't a manual on prayer, goodness gracious no! What this is thought, is a reminder to all of us that we have been taught to do something by Jesus Himself, so I think we'd better pay attention. God deserves praise, others deserve our concern, and we need more of God in every area of our lives. Should prayer get greater priority in our lives? Well you answer that one.