The Bible calls us to pray. Regardless of whether you believe that prayer is simply a way to line up with God regarding what He has already determined to do or that it is asking God to do what He otherwise would not do; the truth remains that we are called to pray. We are not required to understand the divine working that makes prayer effective but we are to be obedient to obey the principles of prayer. Today's reading gives us a few principles.
First we are to be reminded that God is our audience when we pray, not people. So when we pray don't do it to impress people. Don't be praying to teach other people either, the audience is God.
The other thing is that we are not to use meaningless repetitions but we are to pray with sincerity. Jesus is telling us that we are not to resort to the mindless repeating of a prayer but we are to pray from our hearts to God. Thinking deeply about what we are saying and why we are saying it. He goes on to give us an example of prayer and what is ironic is that that example has become one of the prayers that is meaningless repetition.
Take time today and each day to follow the model of prayer but using your own words. Use the outline in the Fasting Journal as a way to pray each day.
DRAWING NEAR TO GOD
Take a moment to meditate on God and who He is each day. Here is an attribute to meditate on. Write down what God would reveal to you about this.
God (Father, Son & Holy Spirit) is Righteous - He is holy, just, good, trustworthy, pure, faithful, true & reliable; His justice and His love are inseparable and perfect; without His perfect justice His love would not exist, and neither would His mercy or grace. His righteousness entails that for us to escape His just wrath, He Himself had to extend mercy by paying our debt Himself.
Ask yourself these questions...
(1) What does this attribute mean about us and our attitudes?
(2) Where would we be if God/Christ did not have this attribute?
(3) What is our proper and reasonable response to this attribute of God?
(4) What things is the Holy Spirit revealing to us as we meditate on this attribute of God?
(5) How can we relate this attribute of God to the righteous life, atoning death and life-giving resurrection of Jesus Christ?