“The one concern of the devil is to keep Christians from praying. He fears nothing from prayerless studies, prayerless work, and prayerless religion. He laughs at our toil, mocks at our wisdom, but trembles when we pray” (Samuel Chadwick).
Lately, I’ve had a hard time praying. Whenever I make a point to pray, my mind almost immediately wanders and I lose focus. I get sleepy. I start remembering certain songs and conversations from the past.
I read about the saints of old who prayed on their knees for hours. I do good to make it a good five minutes before my prayer train goes off track and derails. My best kind of praying is what they call popcorn prayers, those little snippets of petition and praise tossed up to God throughout the day.
It’s a really good thing for me that Jesus didn’t say that I had to master the art of prayer before the Father would hear me and grant me what I ask. In fact, prayer works not because of anything inherently good in me, but only because of the shed blood of Jesus on my behalf.
It’s only because of the risen Christ in me that God hears me. It’s only because Jesus traded my sin for His perfection that I can come boldly before the throne of grace in time of need.
If I have that kind of access, I wonder why I don’t pray more. I wonder why I don’t pray more boldly. I wonder why it takes me trying so many other avenues before I finally get to the last resort of prayer.
Satan trembles when God’s people pray, because that’s where the real power lies. That’s where the real spiritual battles are fought and won. Maybe you and I just need to pray more.