by Pastor John Eiselt
“It’s HARD TO PRAY.
It’s hard enough for many of us to make an honest request to a friend we trust for something we truly need. But when the request gets labeled “praying” and the friend is termed “God,” things often get very tangled up. You’ve heard the contorted syntax, formulaic phrases, meaningless repetition, vague nonrequests, pious tones of voice, and air of confusion. If you talked to your friends and family that way, they’d think you’d lost your mind! But you’ve probably talked that way to God. You’ve known people who treat prayer like a rabbit’s foot for warding off bad luck and bringing goodies. You’ve known people who feel guilty because their quantity of prayer fails to meet some presumed standard. Maybe you are one of those people.
Prayer—it tends to become a production and a problem.
Life—it’s always a production and a problem. You cycle through your to-do list, your anxieties, distractions, pressures, pleasures, and irritants.
God—he’s there, somewhere, sometimes.
Somehow those two problematic productions and the Lord of heaven and earth don’t all get on the same page very often.
But prayer isn’t meant to be a production or a problem. And God is here now. Prayer is meant to be the conversation where your life and your God meet.”
(A Praying Life, Paul E. Miller, Forward by David Powlison)
Have you ever wondered how prayer “works”, or whether or not it “works” at all?
You’re not alone. Quite frankly, after another week filled with yet another unspeakable tragedy, the question of God’s presence, power, and the efficacy of prayer weigh heavily on us all.
Chances are, you long for a regular experience of prayer that connects you to God and brings you his peace, joy, and empowerment in your daily life.
This weekend we’re going to look at the life and prayer of Nehemiah to discover three ways to improve our prayer life; not only in how we pray but in how we live connected to the God of the story and bring his presence into the world around us.