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The Pastor’s Pen

Our focus this past Sunday was prayer, and, certainly, we can all agree that prayer is vital to the spiritual life. We simply can’t get by without it! And yet, we all find prayer difficult at times. We struggle with words. We wonder if we are doing it “just right.”

Paul speaks to this concern in Romans 8: 26—“Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.”

What comfort! The Holy Spirit intercedes for us when we are having a tough time praying! When we don’t have the words we need, God does.

This reminds me of a quote I used in last Sunday’s sermon from the book “Praying: Finding our Way through Duty to Delight” by Carolyn Nystrom and J.I. Packer. Nystrom says the following: “Some people get so entangled in the various dos and don’ts of prayer, so transfixed by the problem of sorting out what is our part and what is God’s part, so bogged down fretting over whether they, as mere flawed humans, should ask anything of a holy, almighty God, or conversely whether there is any point in asking since God will do what he wants anyway that they become paralyzed about praying…Don’t fret; just pray. God fixes our prayers on the way up! If he does not answer the prayer we made, he will answer the prayer we should have made. That is all anyone needs to know” (pp. 174-175).

Again, what comfort! If we pray the “wrong” prayer or think we’ve messed up the whole thing, “God fixes our prayers on the way up!” Know that God is faithful. All he wants is to spend time with us, and prayer at its core is simply making space for God in our daily lives.

God wants to hear from us, and he wants to be with us. One of the ways we make this happen is through prayer. Let’s get busy!