Summary: How to develop a strong Prayer Habit is a teaching on making prayer a priority in our lives.
How to develop a strong Prayer Habit
There seems to be two kinds of Christians when it comes to prayer.
1st. Those who love list and formula's to prayer.
I am finding out that we don't need more heavy loads but we need to bring our loads to Jesus.
Matthew 11:28-30 (NKJV)
28 “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 “For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”
Matthew 11:28-30 (NCV) “Come to me, all of you who are tired and have heavy loads, and I will give you rest. 29 Accept my teachings and learn from me, because I am gentle and humble in spirit, and you will find rest for your lives. 30 The burden that I ask you to accept is easy; the load I give you to carry is light.”
For to many Christians, spiritual disciplines turn into a strait jacket experience, that squeezes the life and the adventure with God right out of you.
Talk about overdoing it with devotional's
Galatians 5:1 (NIV) It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.
2nd. Then there are those who don't think that they need any Spiritual habits or structure to grow.
They make statements like, "I'm going to let go and let God do whatever He wants to do, and I'll see what happen's".
But this American attitude at best is nieve, and at worst is self deceived.
We cannot grow without structure in the same way we cannot lose weight by just sitting on a couch, watching TV with a bag of chips.
If a goal is really important to me, I must disciple myself in order to achieve it.
Talk about prayer walking
You see I had to decide in advanced that I am going to do it no matter what. Rain, snow, whatever.
If we don't have this mind set we will bail out in the last moment.
When we get serious about learning to pray, it's then time to make a decision.
The decision is:
"I will learn what discipline are necessary to my prayer life and I will practice these disciplines regularly without fail, and I will maintain a good prayer habit NO MATTER WHAT.
OK, So how do we learn the heart building habit of Prayer.
An old saying goes like this:
If you want to learn something, ask an expert.
If I want to learn basketball, ask Michael Jordan
If you want to learn about computers ask Bill Gates
If you want to learn how to have a great prayer life, ASK JESUS!
He is the #1 expert on the subject, can I get an Amen!
His own disciples were so impressed with His prayer life that when Jesus got off His knees one time, they asked "Lord would you teach us to pray".
They knew that compare to Jesus they were in 1st grade on prayer.
Jesus did not object to their question but instead used it for an opportunity to teach them to pray.
Let's look at this teaching:
Matthew 6:5-13 (NKJV) 5 “And when you pray, you shall not be like the hypocrites. For they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the corners of the streets, that they may be seen by men. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward.
6 “But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.
7 “And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words. 8 “Therefore do not be like them. For your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him.
9 “In this manner, therefore, pray:
Our Father in heaven,
Hallowed be Your name.
10 Your kingdom come.
Your will be done
On earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread.
12 And forgive us our debts,
As we forgive our debtors.
13 And do not lead us into temptation,
But deliver us from the evil one.
For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.
This advice concerning prayer that Jesus gave 2000 years ago, still apply's today.
#1. Pray Regularly: V/5 Jesus said "AND WHEN YOU PRAY" He didn't say, IF YOU PRAY.
So we see that pray has to be a part of our lives.