September Reading Plan: Psalm 31-60
"Surely God is my help; the Lord is the one who sustains me." Psalm 54:4
As we finish up the month of September of focusing on prayer, I hope that we have set our minds and hearts to maintain the discipline of prayer.
Discipline sounds harsh, doesn't it? I use that word because to discipline is to train. We must train ourselves to pray each day.
Prayer doesn't come naturally, for any of us. We tend to pray when things are urgent and we don't seem to know what else to do.
This is not what God wants for us. God longs for us to sustain a life of prayer. Prayer keeps us close to Him. Prayer maintains the relationship between God and us.
Today, Lem and I have been married for 16 years. Isn't he a cutie??
We see each other every morning, and we see each other at night when our tired heads hit the pillow. We are together. However, we are not always in sync.
He and I must be intentional about our relationship. We must be intentional about spending quality time together. There is nothing better in this world than face to face time with my man! However, in this season of life it will not happen unless we make it happen.
It is the same with prayer. God is with us. Always. However, are we always with Him? Are we intentional about being with Him. Really, being with Him?
Our days get away from us. The moments slip by. We can get ourselves into a constant state of dizzying business, and find that we are just too busy to stop and pray.
When we lack in prayer, we lack in energy. We lack the spiritual fervor it takes to get us through each day. We run on fumes, and never stop to fill up. Eventually, we run out of gas.
Our bodies,our spirits, every part of us runs much better on prayer!
In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. Romans 8:26
Lem and I could go another 16 years and not say a word to each other. We could live day to day in our own worlds and never stop to engage with each other. However, what would that do to our marriage? Our marriage would be lifeless, powerless, dull.
Who wants a relationship like that? NOT me.
I see it the same way with our relationship with The Father. We must be intentional about being with Him. Talking to Him. Sharing with Him. Listening to Him.
It will not be easy! As with any relationship, there will be distractions. BIG ones.
Remember our sister, Eve, in the garden? She was lured away by the serpent. The enemy caught her eye, and she fell for it. Sin entered the world because she lost her focus. She was pulled away. Lured away.
We have the same enemy using the same trick today. He may not use a fruit to lure us, but oh how he uses other things. Just look at the distractions around you this very second. Your phone, your computer, your favorite app on your phone, your television....
All of this can tend to lure us away from what our spirits really crave. Intimacy with The Father.
How do I know? Because I have to constantly fight them on a daily basis. I have to intentionally turn my phone off in the morning when I have my time with the Lord. I have to intentionally turn my phone off when my kids get home from school.
I know myself too well. Just like Eve, my curiosity gets the best of me, and I am pulled away. Again.
We must train ourselves to pull away. We must train ourselves to pray.
The more we pray, the more we will want to pray. When we know what it is like to be full again, with our spirits nourished from prayer, we will never want to run on fumes again. We will stop at all costs, and pull away to be with Him.
Jesus lived a life of pulling away to pray. Just scan through the New Testament and see how He intentionally pulled Himself away to be with God. [Mark 1:35. Mark 6:45-46, Mark 14:32-34, Luke 4:42, Luke 5:16, Luke 6:12]
If Jesus needed to, we surely need to.
Our Fun Friday Challenge:
Be intentional in your praying. Starting today, make prayer a part of your life. Be intentional about pulling away from distractions. The distractions will not pull away from you. No matter what your schedule holds, make prayer fit in. God will help you and sustain you as you seek to be with Him.
Go, fill your tank.
no more fumes,