Evangelist Dwight L. Moody (1837-1899) wrote: “Some people think God does not like to be troubled with constant coming and asking. The only way to trouble God is not to come at all.” Moody also said, “We are not told that Jesus ever taught his disciples how to preach, but he taught them how to pray. He wanted them to have power with God; then he knew they would have power with man.”
Corrie ten Boom, who offered refuge to Jews in Holland during World War II, said the following: “As a camel kneels before his master to have him remove his burden at the end of the day, so kneel each night and let the Master take your burden.” Ten Boom continued: “If you have some time on your hands, spend part of it on your knees.”
Alexander Maclaren (1826-1910), one of Britain’s most famous preachers, wrote: “The true end of prayer is to get our wills harmonized with his, not to bend his with ours.” And author C.S. Lewis wrote: “If we were perfected, prayer would not be a duty, it would be delight. Some day, praise God, it will be.”
One of the most remarkable insights on Jesus’ priority of prayer is found in Mark 1:35. After a day of preaching, driving out demons, healing Peter’s mother-in-law, then performing miracles on behalf of the “whole town” (verse 33), you know the everyday Jesus normal, he must have been exhausted. He had every right to sleep in. Instead, Jesus gets up “very early in the morning, while it was still dark” to go to a solitary place to pray.
Being prayerful is important stuff. How do we develop a prayerful life?
- Begin our day with prayer. Before our feet hit the floor in the morning, say a prayer of thanksgiving for another day. All too often, the morning is thrown into high gear and before we realize it, the day is done and we still haven’t met with God in prayer.
- Pray often. Are we aware of how little, or how often, we talk with God? Complacency can cause an uncaring attitude. When we live a prayerful life, we become fully aware of the amount of time we spend with God.
- Get to know Him. We cannot develop a relationship with someone unless we spend time with them and get to know them. That is what a prayerful life is: developing a closer walk with God. As we seek to know Him more, we become more prayerful throughout every waking moment of the day.