The way we pray in public reveals what our secret prayers are truly like. Beyond mere words, it is our attitude and motivation that give meaning and substance to prayer.
It could be a perfunctory ritual, passed down through generations; a mechanically recited poem. But equally, the mealtime prayer can be a genuine spiritual exercise.
I’m going to be honest with you. I find prayer really hard. If I had to give reasons for all my tears over the past few years, most of them have come during conversations with God.
“We need a bigger vision in prayer. We need God’s vision! Let’s keep praying and daring to ask for more—for God’s glory, that the gospel may go into all the world, into all nations, that Jesus may come!”
The most important human relationship you'll ever have is with your spouse. Protect it at all costs.
“I live in a high and holy place, but also with the one who is contrite and lowly in spirit, to revive the spirit of the lowly and to revive the heart of the contrite" (Isaiah 57:15).
Whenever we acknowledge that our prayers have become a boring exercise rather than a real conversation with a real person, it’s time to explore creative, tried and tested methods to rebuild a meaningful, enthusiastic and transforming prayer life.
One day, Jesus’s disciples—who followed Him about, observing His every word and action—asked Him to teach them how to pray.
We’d been married only a few weeks when we discovered that growing our spirituality as a couple was going to be much more complicated than the instructions on the packet suggested.
As a book editor who works in a Christian publishing house, I know prayer works from a sales perspective. Books on the topic of prayer are consistently among our best sellers. It seems that many of our customers and readers—mostly people of faith, but including people who are interested but uncertain about faith—are keen to be reassured that prayer works and to find out how best to do it to ensure that it does work for them.
Most of our beliefs are easy to keep, as long as nothing puts them to the test. Like many others, Henry Gerecke discovered to what extent he truly believed in what he had preached for years when faced with a difficult choice.
According to a Barna Group poll, only 6% of Americans have a "biblical worldview", the percentage rising to just 21% for those who regularly attend evangelical churches. This shows that fewer and fewer Christians are turning to Scripture to answer the questions they face.
The scenario in which God is a judge and His creatures are subject to His judgment culminates, in the Bible, with a happy ending for all lovers of righteousness. But what would be the end of a situation in which God is the accused in a trial instituted by His creatures? Whose ending would be happy?
For Christian parents, there is no greater concern than to provide their children with a Christian education. The first public demonstration of this concern is the blessing of children at young ages, in various ways: the baptism of children in traditional churches, or a simple prayer of blessing in Protestant churches. Dedicating their children to God, one way or another, gives parents a sort of certainty, and begins to form the child's identity: they are Christian!
God reveals Himself through the Bible, the person of Jesus Christ, nature, and our conscience. Prayer is not revelatory. If it is neither revelatory for humans nor for God, what is prayer then?