Richard Chenevix Trench (1807-1886) wrote the following prayer:
“Lord, what a change within us one short hour
Spent in thy presence will prevail to make!
What heavy burdens from our bosoms take,
What parched grounds refresh as with a shower!
We kneel, and all around us seems to lower;
We rise, and all, the distant and the near,
Stands forth in sunny outline brave and clear;
We kneel, how weak; we rise, how full of power!
Why, therefore, should we do ourselves this wrong,
Or others, that we are not always strong,
That we are ever overborne with care,
That we should ever weak or heartless be,
Anxious or troubled, when with us is prayer,
And joy and strength and courage are with thee?”
In Luke 11 we find Jesus engaged in prayer in a certain place. We read in verse 1 that when He ceased praying, one of His disciples said to Him, “LORD, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.”
“So He said to them, ‘When you pray, say: Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name, Your kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in Heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our sins, For we also forgive everyone who’s indebted to us. And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.” (NKJV)
In Matthew’s record of this prayer. It ends with – “For Yours is the Kingdom, and the power and the glory forever. Amen!”
The disciples had witnessed His awesome miracles. They had heard His awe-inspiring teaching. They did not ask for power or Him to instruct them on how to preach. It seems that it was His prayer life that seemed to impress them – “LORD TEACH US TO PRAY.”
Brother and sisters, what is your prayer life like? Are you satisfied with your prayer life? Are you seeing answers to your prayers? Would you say that your prayers are impacting the kingdom of darkness?
Do you understand and practice the different components of prayer? I see the following components as being used in our prayer life – Worship of our God, Adoring Him; Giving Thanks to Him; Confession of known sin; Offering up our petitions and Intercession for others.
I think it is really significant that Jesus began this prayer with these words “Our Father.” (Luke 11:2) In other words, prayer begins with God … Your name, Your Kingdom, Your will … Hallowed be Your name. At least half of the prayer concerned honoring and worshipping God before He focused on the other needs. Does God have first place in your prayers and mine? I pray that He does. That is the key to having Him meet our personal needs and the needs of others.
In 1 Chronicle 16:29, we read “Worship the LORD in the splendor of His holiness.” In Revelation 5:12 we read “Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain, to receive … honor and glory and praise!”
Is Jesus the Lover of your soul? More than anything or anyone, do you just love spending time with Him and telling Him what He means to you?
Thomas Goodwin once said “I have known men who came to God for nothing else but just to come to Him, they so loved Him. They scorned to soil Him and themselves with any other errand than just purely to be alone with Him, in His presence.”
This is a true saying I want to interject here – “they who climb the highest see the farthest.” I think it is especially true that those who climb the highest see the clearest. J. Sidlow Baxter wrote “In a spiritual sense it is correspondingly true that the mountain top of secret prayer gives not only a high view, but a far view, and a full view and a clear view. Above the mists of the plains and the vapors of the valley, we begin to see both earthly and heavenly things in a truer light, and our reaction is affected correspondingly.
Let me close with one more quote by G.H. Knight – “the very countenance of a man of much prayer will often bear witness to his aquaintedness with the mountain height. It will show a softened spiritual beauty that is in his prayerless days it never had. But whether the face bears witness to the mountain top or not, the whole life and character will. There’s sure to be seen in his whole tone an elevation of feeling showing clearly that he is accustomed to being often very near to God: and thus his high fellowship with God will bring about a high life before men.”
Do you love spending time with your Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ? If we do there will be an obvious transformation in character, conduct, and commitment to life and things that matter to Christ and others.
Beloved, let’s spend quality time with Christ so that our lives are transformed by His life.
Oh, to be like Him!
Pastor Leonard DeWitt