Devote Youselves to Prayer By George Stroh, Senior Pastor October 19, 2009
One of our greatest blessings as Christians is the privilege of prayer. We have been granted direct access to God and we are encouraged to pray about "everything"; to pray "without ceasing"; and to pray "at all times". Christians are to be devoted to prayer.
This being true, why do we spend so relatively little time praying and why is prayer sometimes so hard for us? Our enemy, Satan, understands the power of prayer. He knows that in our own strength, we are no match for him, the demons or their false doctrines. The unbelieving world denies the very existence of the God of the Bible and so rejects the truth and power of prayer to Him. And our flesh is weak. As Jesus said in the Garden of Gethsemane; "Keep watching and praying that you may not enter into temptation; the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak." (Matthew 26:41).
That night in the Garden of Gethsemane, just before His betrayal and arrest, Jesus asked His disciples to be praying and to "... keep watch with Me". But three times He returned to find them sleeping rather than praying and watching. I wonder how many of us are also at times sleeping, not physically, but spiritually, rather than praying and watching? Like the disciples, when we are not alert in prayer, we can be oblivious to the spiritual warfare around us; For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places." (Ephesians 6:21).:
If we are to avoid becoming a casualty of this spiritual warfare, we must keep devoting ourselves to prayer. To "devote" is to concentrate on, to be dedicated to, to be enthusiastic about and to be faithfully pursuing a purpose or cause, ignoring any distractions. In our prayers, we need to keep alert recognizing the spiritual battles and the temptations to do battle in our own strength.
We need to be "keeping alert with an attitude of thanksgiving", continually seeking God's wisdom and waiting on Him. And we must have an attitude of thankfulness-- Thankful for the privilege of prayer provided for us in Christ our Lord and Savior. Thankful knowing that He always hears our prayers. Thankful in the knowledge that He will faithfully answer our prayers according to His perfect will and in accordance with His marvelous grace, mercy and love. Devote yourselfes to prayer. Maranatha!