12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.
16 But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.
What does prayer mean to you? Be honest with yourself. Do you feel like you’re talking to the ceiling? Do you actually believe God not only hears all your prayers, but can and will respond? Prayer can be misunderstood and is often overlooked, but it is central in our journey with Jesus. It isn’t an itemized list or simply a task to check off our busy schedules.
God doesn’t want proper words or mindless, rote recitations; He wants our hearts. While talking with God can take many forms, it is always about relationship. It’s about spending time together, talking and listening, becoming familiar with God’s heart and character. It’s about being authentic and truthful, exposing your deepest pains, most secret hopes, and wildest dreams for your life.
This is the kind of relationship we were made to have with our Father, and it is profoundly reciprocal. Prayer becomes our roots, fastened to the rock, Jesus, and built upon the foundation of His Word. In this relationship, we begin to hear the Holy Spirit speaking to our hearts through the Scripture and our lives become linked up to what God is already at work doing in us and the world around us, for our good and for His glory!
Prayer and time alone with the Father was a priority for Jesus. Take some time today to consider the priority of prayer in your own life. Does it hold a significant place of importance in your relationship with the Father?