Teach Us To Pray
One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.” Luke 11:1
Many times in our churches we hear the call to prayer for this or that person or problem. We learn about the importance of prayer in our lives and in our development in Christ. We learn more about conversing with God on retreats, through one another, in books on the subject, but mainly through the practice of prayer. We have likely heard the good counsel that we should be praying not only for, but with our spouses, family members, friends and co-workers.
Years ago, shared prayers with my wife consisted of those said over meals and in times of crisis. A couple of times after retreats I’d come home convicted that we should be having regular prayer time together, but never finding a lasting method of prayer to sustain us.
About ten years ago, I finally resolved to make this happen. The following morning, I offered a prayer, holding her hand and hoping for the best. However, I sensed resistance on her part. That night, I asked her why she wouldn’t pray with me. She responded that she “didn’t like to pray that way”. I then asked, “How do you like to pray?” She told me that she likes rote prayers. I was pleased to be able to reply that I could pray that way, and we began a daily journey together in prayer.
These few minutes together each day in prayer have been so beneficial to us both individually and as a couple. A special closeness comes through during that time. Among the lessons learned for me was that I needed only to ask my wife what she liked to do in order to find the answer of how to pray together. There are many ways and reasons to pray. We need to be sensitive to the desires of others as we learn ways to bring more prayer into our homes and offices.
TAKE THE CHALLENGE: What steps could you take to make prayer with others a more regular part of your life?
By: Clem Richardson