The Priority of Private Prayer

Why don’t we pray more?

If that question doesn’t resonate with you, then try checking back in with us tomorrow.  To the rest of us, this is a question that brings great conviction.  Why don’t we pray more?  What are our excuses?  DA Carson gives several in an excerpt from his book, “A Call to Spiritual Reformation: Priorities from Paul and His Prayers”.

  1. I’m too busy
  2. I feel too dry spiritually
  3. I feel no need to pray
  4. I am too bitter to pray
  5. I am too ashamed to pray
  6. I am content with mediocrity

Which is it for you?

Or maybe a more fundamental question is “What does our lack of private prayer tell us about what we believe about God”? I believe that our theology drives our practice.  It was AW Tozer who said, “It would be impossible to overemphasize the importance of sound doctrine in the life of a Christian. Right thinking about all spiritual matters is imperative if we would have right living.”  So ultimately, if we’re not praying, then something is wrong with our theology….or there is something about our theology that we only affirm with head knowledge, and don’t really believe it in our heart.  Such it is with prayer.  If we are not praying, then what does this tell us about what we believe about God and about what He says about prayer?

For those desiring further inspiration in this area, read this sermon by the late puritan, JC Ryle entitled, A Call to Prayer.

In closing, here’s one of my favorite “prayer quotes” from Leonard Ravenhill:

“Our spiritual immaturity never shows up more than in our lack of praying, be it alone or in a church prayer meeting. Let 20% of the choir members fail to turn up for rehearsal and the choir master is offended. Let 20% of the church members turn up for a prayer meeting, and the pastor is elated.”

May we be a people who love God, worship God, glorify God, thank God, beseech God, petition God, cry out to God… prayer.


One thought on “The Priority of Private Prayer

  1. Pingback: Prayer: Conversation with God | Reflective Moments

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