Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up. Luke 18:1
Many people, believers as well as unbelievers, often ask themselves this question --and especially among Christians-- because of the low success rate of their prayers; they believe that praying is useless, it is a pure waste of time. Although that's not the subject of this article, understand that it's only when you don't really know HOW something works that doing it brings no pleasure, and yields no benefit. Here are some reasons why we should always pray and never give up:
1. To develop the most important discipline in our life: A prayerful Christian is unstoppable!
The true self is the inner being, the spirit. Prayer is to the spirit what physical exercise is to the body. As a Christian, our spirit is nourished by the Word of God, but it is strengthened by prayer. Be on watch and pray always that you will have the strength to go safely through all those things that will happen and to stand before the Son of Man (Luke 21:36).
2. To get to know the Person of God intimately
Prayer is more than talking to God; it's primarily an encounter with Him. Do not be rash with your mouth, and let not your heart utter anything hastily before God. For God is in heaven, and you on earth; therefore let your words be few (Ecclesiastes 5:2). Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him (Psalms 37:7).
3. To learn to recognize the voice of the Holy Spirit
Just as every child who has just been born learns, in contact with their mother, to recognize her voice, every Christian must learn to recognize the voice of the Holy Spirit through prayer. As they ministered to the Lord and fasted, the Holy Spirit said, “Now separate to Me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them” (Acts 13:2).
4. To allow God to speak to us through His Word
The Word of God is spiritual, that is to say, it is from the Holy Spirit; the Holy Scriptures are inspired by God Himself. To understand them, it is imperative to obtain the help of their author, the Holy Spirit. And He opened their understanding, that they might comprehend the Scriptures (Luke 24:45).
5. To let God comfort us in difficult times
The Holy Spirit is called the Parakletos, which means the Comforter, and His help is just a prayer away from us. The Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you (John 14:17).
6. To let God renew our strength in His presence
It's when we fellowship with God, through prayer, that the Holy Spirit strengthens us. Then an angel appeared to Him from heaven, strengthening Him. And being in agony, He prayed more earnestly. Then His sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground (Luke 22:43-44).
7. To develop the nature and character of God within us
The more we fellowship with God through prayer, and the more time we spend with Him, the more we get to know Him. Whenever Moses went in before the Lord to speak with Him, he would take the veil off until he came out; and he would come out and speak to the children of Israel whatever he had been commanded. And whenever the children of Israel saw the face of Moses, that the skin of Moses’ face shone, then Moses would put the veil on his face again, until he went in to speak with Him (Exodus 34:34-35).
8. To develop one's ability to resist sin
Thanks to prayer, we receive, in the communion of the Holy Spirit, the capacity to resist sin and therefore always to do the will of God. Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak (Matthew 26:41).
9. To walk with Divine Precision in His Directions
The Holy Spirit is our Guide, He leads us each time we call upon Him. "I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you" (Psalms 32:8).
10. To become a close friend of God for eternity
Over time, the more one develops communion with God, through obedience to His Word, as well as during prayer times, one becomes more and more intimate with God. The Lord would speak to Moses face to face, as one speaks to a friend. Then Moses would return to the camp, but his young aide Joshua son of Nun did not leave the tent (Exodus 33:11).
In the morning, prayer is the key that opens to us the treasures of God’s mercies and blessings; in the evening, it is the key that shuts us up under His protection and safeguard. (Billy Graham)
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