Effective Prayer

 FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 18, 2011

Now it came to pass, as He was praying in a certain place, when He ceased, that one of His disciples said to Him, “Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.”
—Luke 11:1

Jesus gave us the model for all prayer in what we call “The Lord’s Prayer.” And although there is nothing wrong with praying it verbatim, The Lord’s Prayer is more of a model, or a template, for prayer.

Jesus began with, “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name” (Luke 11:2). Now if we had written this prayer, it would go along the lines of, “Our Father in heaven, give us day by day our daily bread.” In other words, Let’s just get to this. But Jesus said, “When you pray, say: Our Father in heaven . . .” (verse 2). Right off the bat, “our Father” speaks of intimacy. It speaks of relationship. It speaks of closeness.

“Our Father in heaven” (emphasis added) speaks of the majesty and the greatness and the power of God.

“Hallowed be Your name” is effectively saying, “Lord, I glorify You. I worship You. I praise You. I acknowledge Your greatness.

“Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” Before we offer a word of personal petition, we acknowledge that we want God’s will more than our own.

The objective of prayer is to get our will in alignment with God’s will. Prayer is not trying to align God’s will with ours; prayer is aligning our will with His. So the thing we need to ask ourselves is, “Is this prayer according to the will of God?” And how would we know that? Through careful study of Scripture.

If you take more time to contemplate the greatness of God, I think it will affect your prayer. On some occasions your prayer might be shorter, and at other times, it might be longer. But certainly it is going to be effective, because you will recognize that you are speaking to God Almighty.

TODAY’S RADIO PROGRAM: “Why? — ”

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Used by permission from Harvest Ministries with Greg Laurie, PO Box 4000, Riverside, CA 92514.

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