Prayer is one of the most powerful weapons we use to defend against the attacks of the enemy. It is one of the most sincere and vulnerable positions that we can enter into to have fellowship with our Father. Yet, when it comes to our prayer lives, many of us view it as another one of our “Christian responsibilities and obligations” rather than viewing it as the privilege that it truly is. How do you view your prayer life? Is it a vital part of your daily routine? Or do you only pray during times of distress and trouble? If we were to be completely honest with ourselves, we could probably all agree that our prayer lives could use a bit of improvement (some maybe more than others). We can certainly rely on God to answer us during times of distress when we cry out to Him in prayer. Psalms 4:1 says, “Answer me when I call to you, my righteous God. Give me relief from my distress; have mercy on me and hear my prayer.” God is faithful to not only hear our prayers but also to answer them. However, prayer is not about just asking God for things that we need or desire. It is about establishing a relationship with Him built on faith and trust in Him.
God knows the desires of our hearts long before we even think to ask, but He still loves to hear from us. It does not matter if we are asking for guidance or giving thanks because it draws us closer to Him. The bible is filled with people who were led to pray for a multitude of things that we still pray about today- fear, anger, worry, provision, family, nation, governments, and our world. They knew then, as we know now just what the bible says according to James 5:16, “Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” In Matthew 6:9-13, Jesus teaches His disciples how they should pray, “ After this manner, therefore, pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen.” There are some very important insights that we should learn about this prayer. First, the words “Our Father” helps us to understand that this is a prayer that is relational between us and our Father. This is God’s warm and personal authoritative position in our lives. He is our Father, and we are His children. Romans 8:15, “For we have received the Spirit of adoption as sons by whom we cry Abba Father.” Secondly, we recognize that God, “Art in heaven”.
There is no comparison between God and earthly fathers. God reigns supreme over all the heavens and the earth. We then move on to, “Hallowed be thy name”. God’s name is deserving of the highest honor- not only is our Father holy- unique, set apart, and superior- we must proclaim hallowed be your name – for He is worthy to receive glory and honor and praise. 1 Samuel 2:2 declares, “ There is no one holy like the LORD; there is no one besides you; there is no Rock like our God.” God wants to reign in our hearts and our lives- Jesus reminds us to seek God’s plan and not our own. God’s will for our lives has reason and purpose. Psalms 33:11 states, “ But the plans of the LORD stand firm forever, the purposes of his heart through all generations.” God also wants us to depend on Him for everything that we need. Matthew 7:11, “ If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?” Beyond asking for earthly provision, He ultimately wants us to find fulfillment in Him alone. We also see in this prayer the need for forgiveness of our sins. God alone can forgive sin and remove guilt. Psalms 130:12,“ As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us. We also realize that once we are forgiven there is no condemnation towards us as stated in Romans 8:1 “ There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit” The Lord’s prayer also asks to “deliver us from temptation”. God alone protects us from temptation and the enemy. 1 Corinthians 10:13 declares, “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.” So when we approach God in prayer we must do so confidently believing that He is able to do all that we may ask or inquire of Him. Mark 11:24 states, “Therefore I say unto you, whatever things you desire, when you pray, believe that you will receive them, and you shall have them” Prayer is not only powerful, but both an intimate and corporate event with God. It brings God glory, gives us insight into who He is, and has a tangible effect upon our lives. Prayer is a privilege and a spiritual discipline well worth developing. So let us start working towards having a more meaningful and powerful prayer life because there truly is so much power in prayer.