Prayer is a necessary discipline, second only to reading the Bible. God has spoken to us through the scriptures and through example that we are expected to pray if we expect to become more Christlike. God hears every prayer we say or think, even if it is weak. Despite the importance of prayer, it is incredible how we, as Christians, don’t talk to God regularly. The Pew Research Center tells us that 68% of Christians pray daily, 17% weekly, 5% monthly, and 9% seldom or never. I will say that 68% of believers praying daily is higher than I thought it would be. We have to remember that only Christians were polled. Another interesting fact is that 33% of those praying daily were between 30 and 49. I have to wonder what our senior saints focus on: they came in at 22% praying daily. If you’re a Christian, you should be praying daily. If you are not, you miss the best part of the day.
Jesus expects us to pray, as stated in the gospels.
- Matthew 6:5, “And when you pray …”
- Matthew 6:6, “But when you pray …”
- Matthew 6:7, “And when you pray …”
- Matthew 6:9, “Pray then like this …”
- Luke 11:9, “And I tell you, ask …; seek…; knock.”
- Luke 18:1, “And he told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray.”
Jesus set an example of prayer for us to follow.
- Mark 1:35, “Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.”
- Luke 5:16, “But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.”
- John 17:1, “After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed: “Father, the hour has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you.”
In addition, Jesus still is praying for us. In his letter to the Romans in 8:34, the apostle Paul tells us, “Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.”
The Bible gives us clear instructions we are to “Continue steadfastly in prayer.” Colossians 4:2. Believers who continue steadfast in prayer make it a priority in their daily lives. Sometimes you must sacrifice time to make sure you have time to pray. It is well worth it as it is our most crucial conversation all day. I Thessalonians 5:17 states that we should “Pray without ceasing.” This reminds us that prayer is a relationship with God Almighty. This does not mean that we should pray all day. God knows we have other things we must do. It does mean that God should be at the forefront of our minds all day, and as we engage in different activities or have conversations with others, we should keep Him in mind and pray.
I pray that we all can embark on more vital prayer life.