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The Audacity of Prayer

February 5, 2018

Many who think about praying concern themselves with the right words. It has often been said, “I don’t know what to say.” Knowing what to say is not nearly as important as many seem to think. God hears your request if you stutter and stammer. God hears your request if you use the wrong words or don’t say something embarrassing. In his comments on Psalm 17 Charles Spurgeon mentioned that the infant’s cry is heard by his parents, but not because of his eloquence or grammar, nor even because of his intensity or sincerity. The infant’s cry is heard because of the compassion of the parents.

Mother’s have a marvelous ability to tune in to the crying of their babies. A mother could be in a crowded room filled with talking people, music and laughing and still distinguish her baby’s cry over the noise. She can probably tell the difference between a cry of hunger, pain or tiredness. This motherly superpower is not greater than God’s deep concern for the cry of His children. Do you think God hears your prayers because they are theologically rich, properly punctuated discourses of impressive argument, sophisticated reasoning and expert vocabulary? God hears the pleas of His children because they are the pleas of His children. The pagans believe their gods hear “because of their much speaking.” The Christian knows God hears because of His great compassion.

Therefore, Christians ought always to prayer and never quit. Jesus told of a widow who pestered an unjust judge to give her justice. Though this judge did not fear God or regard man, he finally gave her justice because she kept bothering him. Jesus also told of a man who had unexpected, late night visitors and had nothing to feed them. He went to his friends house in the middle of the night and began to make a commotion to get some bread to feed his guests. His friend would not get out of bed to give him bread because of friendship, but he would because of the obnoxious audacity of the man making request. Prayer is audacious.

Prayer is bold. A serious consideration of prayer shows it to be an amazing act of presumption. Puny creatures go to the Creator and Eternal King to ask Him to concern Himself with their little lives. An ant tromping into your living room to demand you give it a grain of sugar is far less remarkable than the Christian’s daily entrance to the throne of God to ask for his daily bread. Yet, this boldness of prayer is exactly what God commands and what God enjoys. He delights when you pray shamelessly.

Pray with great earnest. Do not come halfhearted and disinterested. Pray with vigor, with passion, with concern and with a heart yearning for an answer. “Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.” (Hebrews 4:16)

“Our praying needs to be pressed and pursued with an energy that never tires, a persistency which will not be denied, and a courage that never fails.” (E.M. Bounds)


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