Sunday, November 10, 2013

Pray Less

Pray Less
November 11, 2013
Matthew 6:7  "And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like the pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words."

There is an old cliche that says you have two ears and one mouth so it is suggested you should speak half as much as you listen.  It is a trite saying that has some earthly wisdom in it, as we all should truly listen to others far more than we speak at them.  I say speak AT them because true communication is actually a volley, a back and forth consisting of speaking and listening.  If we were truly listening to what others had to say, we would speak WITH them instead of AT them.  We would listen to them, process what they were actually communicating, and then respond appropriately based upon what they communicated.  You know exactly what I'm referring to, as you've had one sided conversations with someone who wasn't truly listening.  We are all guilty of this; it happens.

Since we are all guilty of speaking more than listening, it is reasonable to consider that we do this in our prayer time with the Lord, too.  If you are honest with yourself, during a ten minute prayer time with the Lord, you probably do the majority of the speaking.  This doesn't actually accomplish the purpose for which prayer was intended.  The Lord already knows what's in your heart; prayer is the opportunity to find out what's in the Lord's heart.  If you spend more time speaking at the Lord than listening, you will miss all the important things He has to say.

Scripture says that the Lord already knows what you are going to ask for in prayer.  It is a foregone conclusion before you utter a word.  He knows.  He already knows!  This is actually encouraging, because it means He heard your prayer before you said it.  This is an opportunity to be more efficient in your prayer time.  Since He already knows what is on your heart, you have the opportunity to speak less and listen more.  If your prayer time is mostly spent speaking, you have permission to pray less so you can actually hear Him.  Your life would be radically changed if you truly listened to what was on the Lord's heart.  Mostly we spend our few moments trying to unload what is heavy on our hearts but never give a moment for the Lord to do the same.

The Lord has so much to say to you; His heart is heavy with words to communicate only you aren't listening.  You are too busy babbling about your stress load, your problems with your job, the anxieties of your family, and your rising financial concerns.  News flash, He already knows about them and has answers for everything.  Only you can't hear His answers for them because you spend ten minutes venting your concerns to Him and then stop the prayer time short.  You stop praying before He even has a chance speak.  You stop before He has the opportunity to respond to your concerns.  You stop before He has even a moment to tell you what's on HIS heart.  Your failure to listen to the Lord sets your situations up for failure, the very situations you are praying about.

This week, take the time to pray, only say nothing, absolutely nothing.  Just listen.  Try it for a week and see how your situations resolve.  I promise it will revolutionize your life!

Don't take my word for it; look it up:  1 Chron 28:9, Matt 6:6-8, Acts 15:8, Heb 4:12

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