A word about Prayer

Jeff Henderson Bible Articles - General

With all of the modern means of communication that are available to us today, there is little excuse for not staying in touch with friends and relatives. Many young people have made use of networking websites and information sharing blogs. Yet, this instant means of communication is nothing new for mankind. God has been receiving updates and requests for several thousand years. Prayer has been a part of the righteous’ means of communication since Old Testament times.

The Bible tells us not only what prayer is but also its importance to both us and to God. We quickly learn from the example of prayer that Jesus gave to his disciples that our prayers are directed to God the Father. The fact that Jesus begins his words with the expression “Our Father who is in Heaven,” should not surprise us. We often do the same. Take for example how letters are written. We begin by stating who we are addressing. With the example of Jesus we understand the need and the appropriateness of giving God praise and adoration. “Hallowed be thy name.” We rightly express through the words that we speak the honor and the glory that is given to the creator and sustainer of life on earth. With our lips we extol the name of God, Jehovah, the Almighty, etc. In our prayers we, like Jesus, indicate recognition of the relationship that exists with his children by calling him Father. The words we speak are of grave importance as we talk and communicate with God through the avenue of prayer as directed in the Bible.

There is however another side of the equation that needs to be considered and that is our actions. We need to be just as aware of our actions connected with prayer as we are with the words from our heart. The Bible mentions various position taken during a time of praying such as kneeling in prayer (Luke 22:41-42), bowing our heads (Exodus 4:31), and of standing (Luke 18:13). These are outward displays of reverence, honor, and respect toward God. To help understand what I have in mind, think about what is done when the flag is raised and we hear the national anthem. Hats are removed, hands are placed over hearts, and our mind fills with thoughts of the sacrifice that others made. Isn’t it safe to say that thoughts of recipes, schoolwork, future television shows and such are not in the forefront of our feelings? We turn our head in the direction of the flag. We think about the words of the song often times singing the words as they are played or preformed. If we can give such honor and respect to our national anthem, should it be any less so when speaking to God the creator and Savior of mankind?