Moses said to the Lord, “Pardon your servant, Lord. I have never been eloquent, neither in the past nor since you have spoken to your servant. I am slow of speech and tongue.” Exodus 4:10
A woman went to Andrew Murray with the problem of feeling she couldn't pray. He said, "Why then, do you not try this? As you go to your inner chamber, however cold and dark your heart may be, do not try in your own might to force yourself into the right attitude. Bow before Him and tell Him that He sees in what a sad state you are and that your only hope is in Him. Trust Him, with a childlike trust, to have mercy upon you, and wait upon Him. In such a trust you are in a right relationship with Him. You have nothing -- He has everything." The woman later told Murray that his advice had helped her. She discovered that her trust in Christ's love for her could help her pray, even when prayer did not come easily. Our Daily Bread, November 13.
Years ago, I made a covenant with God that I would not make excuses for not praying. I have since learned that even when praying doesn’t come easy, it is a necessity I cannot forego. In return, God has satisfied all my needs and protected me from the attacks of the enemy. Therefore, I don’t make excuses for not praying. Instead, I try to find additional reasons to pray because I get renewed and revitalized whenever I pray.
Prayer is more than an activity. It is the very air that I breathe. Without prayer, I become faint spiritually and breathless. I’ve discovered that my judgment is faulty, my attitude is ungodly, my motives are selfish, and my relationship with God is unhinged when I do not pray. In short, without prayer, I am a menace to everyone around me.
In today’s text, God approaches Moses to give him the assignment of going back to Egypt to ask Pharoah to let His people go. Moses responded to God with excuses for not wanting to do as asked because of his shortcomings. Because God already anticipated those excuses, He made provisions for Moses to do his assignment despite his inadequacies.
Because prayer is an invitation from God to commune with Him, we should avoid making excuses for not praying. It is a privilege to talk to God. After all, we are all living on borrowed time. The owner of our time is God. How then can we be too busy to spend time in prayer with the one who leased us our time?
The woman who went to Pastor Andrew Murray in today’s illustration struggled with the exercise of prayer. But because she was determined to find her rhythm of prayer, she discovered that her trust in God’s love for her could help her pray. Prayer is a conversation with a loving Father with immeasurable benefits. It is because of God’s love for us we should avoid making excuses for not praying. God's love affirms and strengthens us. His love empowers and restores us. Without His love, we would walk in anxiety and despair.
Here are a few things you should do if you find yourself struggling to pray. First, read scripture to speak to God. There are many powerful prayers in scripture we can use when we struggle with our own words. Second, spend time in meditation. Learn to listen to God as much as you talk to God. Third, be intentional about prayer. Set time aside from family, work, and other tasks to have focused time with God in prayer. Fourth, go to a private place, then "don’t force yourself into the right attitude of prayer. Bow before Him and tell Him that He sees in what a sad state you are and that your only hope is in Him. Trust Him, with a childlike trust, to have mercy upon you, and wait upon Him. In such a trust you are in a right relationship with Him. You have nothing -- He has everything." (Andrew Murray).
Questions for Personal Reflections
What excuses are you prone to make for not praying?
What do you need to do to find your rhythm of prayer?
Prayer- Blessed Lord, please help me not to make any excuse for not praying. Give me the wisdom to appreciate the beauty of communicating with you through prayer even when I do not feel like it. Help me to be consistent in setting time aside to pray so I can remain in a relationship of loving union with you.