Why Is It So Hard To Pray?
The world atmosphere stifles Divine desires. It is contrary to the spirit of prayer. If we live and move in a poisonous atmosphere, it will poison our spiritual life.
The disciples came to the Master and besought Him to teach them to pray. Jesus said, "Enter into…shut thy door" (Matt. 6:6). There must be the barrier of the shut door, the heart and spirit shut in with God. Not the turning of the key in a monkish cell, but in spirit turning the key on the world, and refusing to be moved by the maxims of the world.
It is hard to pray because we must use our brains, and the mind is the last fortress of the devil. "Be renewed in the spirit of your mind" (Eph. 4:23). Seek for the "mind of Christ."
Pray for the clarifying of the mind in prayer. Many pray without any idea what they are going to ask for. There is not sufficient contemplation and meditation. If the angels cannot enter the presence of God unless their faces are covered, how much less dare we rush into His presence with unprepared minds?
It is hard to pray, for to pray is to fight. Let us tell the Lord we cannot pray. As we give expression to this, it will be defiance against the powers of darkness. As we hold on to God we shall eventually break through the opposing forces and learn the lesson of doing so.
When we are on our knees and the heavens are as brass, it is an indication that we enter a spiritual realm, and that we must fight. It is not necessary for us to rend the heavens to reach that realm. We are already seated in heavenly places in Christ. But when we pray we take a weapon in our hand. Fight through!
To wait on God is not to remain passive, but to expect – as we would expect a train when waiting at a station.
Pray about your prayers. See if there is selfishness in them. See if you have prayed amiss. That son you have been praying for, and he is not yet converted – see if you have not been praying with only a mother’s love in your heart. Human affection is not enough. There must be the Divine impulse, the Divine movement.
We can only pray as we have vision of the need of the world, and the spirit of love for the world that Christ had. We are a royal priesthood. We can only be intercessors as we see the need, and we can only see the need as we are in touch with God.
"The Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered" (Rom. 8:26).
Watching is important along with prayer. Prayer is the result of spiritual alertness, and alertness is the result of spiritual life. The fainting man is unconscious of his surroundings. He is alive, but unconscious. Never lose consciousness of the power and presence of God. Pray and faint not.
The breeze of the Holy Spirit may descend today. Are we ready and on the alert? If the breeze came and the sails were not set, and the sailors asleep, they would miss the opportunity. It may be that a missionary is struggling, or it may be that a brother is in sorrow and depression, and God is looking for the man who is ready to pray. God may be looking for an intercessor. Are we ready?
If the church would give herself to prayer, what would it mean to the poor lost innumerable multitude of the unsaved? God would rend the heavens and come down.
God puts the key of His treasure house in the hand of the one who prays. Let us pray!
– Arranged from J. C. Williams.