How God Got Me To Care…. About Prayer

As I get up the morning and make my way on the 5.9 mile, 12 minute drive to work, I often use that as a time of prayer and conversation with God.  I then mosey on into work, grab a cup of coffee and take five minutes of peace while I read some of the current events going on in the world. As I was reading today I found myself doing something interesting and a little scary/sad if you ask me.  I found myself scrolling past the upsetting news stories to get to the next video of a cat smiling or a new Marvel movie review.  Then the scary part dawned on me, I quit caring!  I spend time in prayer a lot; there are things in my life, my family’s life and my church family’s life that I go to God with regularly.  The fact of the matter is that whether it was consciously or subconsciously I became immune to the needs of the world around me and often just focus on things that impact me directly. 

I realized I was passing by things daily that are examples of needed prayer, both locally and globally.  I believe that somewhere along the line I started thinking that someone would do something about it, someone “had this under control”, but the reality of it is there is only one that is in control and that is God!  At that moment the words of 1 Thessalonians 5:17 struck me like ton of bricks.  “Pray without ceasing”.  Never stop praying; C.S. Lewis once said “I pray because I can’t help myself. I pray because I’m helpless. I pray because the need flows out of me all the time – waking and sleeping. It doesn’t change God- it changes me.”
And just like that God reminded me how important prayer was all the time!  So what did I do, I dropped down and prayed not only for some of the atrocities I saw in the news but also that I may be more Christ like in my understanding and application of prayer in my life.  To understand that I need help, that I am helpless without God.  Oswald Smith once said “when we work, we work; when we pray, God works” – what an amazingly simplistic thought.  I immediately went and grabbed my computer, jumped on my YouVersion bible account on the computer and started being led through God’s word.  It probably looked chaotic to an outsider but God was really walking me through this lesson he wanted me to learn. 
I was on a journey through the Gospels and what I saw was a now obvious pattern in the life of Christ and how he prayed.  Christ had a specific attitude in and about prayer and it focused around something he said in John 5:19 the Son can do nothing of Himself”.  We see this attitude towards prayer exampled in Luke 6:12-13 when Christ is choosing disciples, and he went up on the mountain to pray to his Father.  We see it in Mark 6:41 when he fed the five thousand “…and looking up toward heaven” … he was recognizing it was the fathers work.  We see it in John 11: 40-42 when Jesus stood at Lazarus’s tomb and gave thanksgiving to God for what He (the Father) was about to do. Christ ALWAYS had prayerful dependence on the Father; so if that need was true for Christ, then how much more should that be true for us?
In closing folks (because I could probably write on this for hours) “when we work, we work; when we pray God works”.  So I pray that I do not become complacent to what God reveals around me, and that I pray continually, without ceasing.  That I am aware and conscious to the sense of need for me and for others and that I can have a Christ like attitude of prayer in my life.  Lord, just as the unnamed disciple requested… teach me to pray… “Teach us to pray” (Luke 11:1).