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Seeds of the Kingdom

Simple Prayers

by Christel Baxter

And when you pray, do not heap up phrases (multiply words, repeating the same ones over and over) as the Gentiles do, for they think they will be heard for their much speaking. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him.
Matthew 6:7-8 (Amplified)

The topic of prayer is vast and there is so much one could say about it. However, I have found that praying seems to be something many people battle with at some point or another. There could be a variety of reasons for this. When we are very pressured and distracted by busyness, we may battle to focus. Our own perception of what we think prayer should sound like may also hinder us in our praying.

The scripture in Matthew 6:7-8 speaks about what prayer is NOT supposed to be. When we pray, we should not desperately be trying to get God’s attention by using fanciful words or impressive language. In fact, this scripture tells me that our many words and meaningless repetitions are not what God wants. Psalm 65:2 describes God as ‘the One who hears prayer’. He is not hard of hearing.

I think that, although there is much to learn about prayer, it is at times made to be far more complicated than it is. Psalm 139 says. ‘You perceive my thoughts from afar … Before a word is on my tongue You, Lord, know it completely’(verses 2 & 4). So prayer is not about ‘getting it right’ and using the correct words and methods. He knows our thoughts and what we are going to say, even before we say it!

God loves us and cares deeply about the things that affect our lives. He knows our needs, our heartaches, our desperations and our desires. He really does hear when we cry out to Him. One word spoken from a sincere heart is more than enough for God! Psalm 34:15 says, ‘The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and His ears are attentive to their cry’. Attentive means ‘watchful, mindful and alert’. Be encouraged that God pays attention to us when we call on Him, no matter where we are at in our lives. We simply need to turn our attention to Him, allow our heart to connect with His heart, and be less concerned with being eloquent in our conversations with Him.

Isaiah 30:18 ‘And therefore the Lord [earnestly] waits [expecting, looking, and longing] to be gracious to you; and therefore He lifts Himself up, that He may have mercy on you and show loving-kindness to you …’

Prayer: Thank You, Lord, that You hear every prayer that I pray, whether it comes from eloquent or from stuttering lips. Thank You that Your ears are attentive to the cries of my heart. Thank You for Your mercy and loving-kindness towards me. Amen.

Christel Baxter joined the Associate prayer ministry team at Shere House, S.Africa in 2008 after attending the 20 day school. She is married to Gary, who serves with her on the associate team. Their children, Liezl and Wesley, are both married and they adore their son-in-law and daughter-in-law! Christel is passionate about seeing broken lives restored and especially loves ministering God`s love and healing to women of all ages.

 

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