The Gift of Prayer
“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden and overburdened, and I will cause you to rest. I will ease and relieve and refresh your souls.” (Matthew 11:28). The most beautiful aspect of prayer is that Jesus is always open to us and He waits for us. He wants us to come to Him and express the deepest hurts and concerns, even though He knows everything. It is in that time, that conversation with Him that you will receive the answers, the comfort, and the peace that you need. Remember He is the one that gives peace that passes all understanding.
Immediately following the death of Jesus, the veil of the temple was torn in two from the top to the bottom. (Matthew 27:51). This was the curtain that separated the Holy Place from the Holy of Holies. The death of Jesus was the opening for man to have direct contact into the presence of God. Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6).
As a Believer, the acceptance of Jesus opens the way to the Father. You have an open invitation to come before Him. Because of His love for you, the Father sent His only Son to open the way for Him to have a conversation with you. He wants to talk with you in spite of your sin. When He looks upon you, He sees the precious blood of Jesus. The Father knows that you have received and accepted the invitation to come back to Him. It is that Invitation that has no limitations of time or method, as you come before Him.
Prayer is really a conversation between you and God. In my early years of this journey, I had a tendency to just pour out everything and say amen. That was it. I never thought to take time to listen, to hear anything that the Holy Spirit may have wanted to speak to me. It was like I was on the telephone, said everything I needed and hung up. I never thought about what was on God’s heart and mind. Essentially, I was selfish in my time with Him.
At some point on this walk, I began to understand and listen. Sometimes, I have this thing called ‘listening prayer.’ Instead of picking up the phone to say everything, I just listen to see if He wants to say anything. Really after all my early years of just talking, I am quite sure He has been waiting for me to be quiet!
Recently as I began to write children’s books, there was a development of another aspect to my prayers. I began to talk to Him simply and more childlike, just like as the character did. As I began to have conversations with Him, I knew that it was very different and something was happening that I could not explain, and it was a refreshing experience.
Have you ever thought that Jesus might be bored with your prayers? I am not talking about repetition. Maybe He wants you to pray something that you would think impossible, but He wants to answer to demonstrate His mighty and awesome power and to say “with men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” (Matthew 19:26).
Think about all the times that He wants to talk to you and share the hidden, the secrets, the mysteries, and you are too busy releasing everything that He already knows. You have just missed an invitation into the mind and heart of the Creator of everything seen and unseen. What if He wanted to share with you the secret to a desperately needed cure? Would He have to wait or even search for someone else?
One of the greatest minds in this century that revolutionized agriculture with his scientific discoveries was George Washington Carver. He invented over three hundred uses for the peanut, one hundred uses for the sweet potato, and alternative fuels using soybeans. What was his secret? Prayer! He began his day with prayer and spent much time during the day in prayer. He just talked with God. Even though he was a great scientist, he acknowledged that all of his discoveries were given by God. Obviously God found a man that He could release many secrets to for the benefit of mankind.
Years ago, I found scriptures in Ezekiel concerning the sons of Zadok, of the sons of Levi. It was fascinating that the Lord said that they were the only ones who could come neat to Him to minister unto Him. “But the priests, the Levites, the sons of Zadok, that kept charge of my sanctuary when the children of Israel went astray from me, they shall come near to me to minister unto me.” (Ezekiel 44:15). I also found this in Ezekiel 40:46 and 43:15. I have continued to think about the Zadok over the years as they were separated for a special purpose. It has occurred to me at different times to ask the Lord how to minister unto Him. This is something that many of us need to meditate on.
The Believer’s born again experience has given access to the God of the universe through the gift of prayer. The intimacy of the relationship is a desire of both parties. God wants us to be real with Him. He is the only one who knows the real you inside and out. Is there anything that you can hide from God? Many of us have forgotten that He lives within us. Jesus paid the price being the ultimate sacrifice for us to talk to God. If you take time, you will find that you will have great conversations with God. He is always speaking. Are you available to listen?
”Let us then fearlessly and confidently and boldly draw near to the throne of grace (the throne of God's unmerited favor to us sinners), that we may receive mercy [for our failures] and find grace to help in good time for every need [appropriate help and well-timed help, coming just when we need it].”
(Hebrews 4:16 AMP)