Prayer & Fasting - Day 2

Twenty-One Days of Prayer
Devotion for Families

DAY TWO – “When You Pray…..”

“And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full.” Matthew 6:5

Yesterday we learned Jesus expects us to pray regularly! Here’s another thought from Jesus’ first teaching on prayer!

Jesus encourages you to NOT pray religiously!

Jesus was never interested in religion. In fact, it was religion and religious people that murdered Him. He begins this verse with an interesting statement, “Don’t pray like the religious leaders pray.”  

Why? Prayer is supposed to be sincere not self-serving.

These religious leaders usually prayed showy and public prayers trying to impress people with their piety. Since prayer issues from the heart the form of your prayers can reveal the fitness of your heart.

I have been in Wesleyan Churches nearly all my life and I have to say that Wesleyans are generally good prayers! Quite a few of them prayed for me as I was developing in my faith! Hopefully, many of them are still praying for me!

But I must admit that as I listened to the Saints of God pray publicly in church or at a prayer meeting, I found it rather intimidating! They prayed fervently and fluidly as the words flowed out of their hearts and through their lips. I couldn’t pray like that and I often found myself praying they wouldn’t call on me to pray out loud!

Once I began praying on a regular basis, I gradually became more comfortable at praying publicly. Maybe it was just me. Maybe you have never felt that way. But as you pray regularly, and you become more adept at praying in public don’t pray to impress others, pray to inspire them! I don’t know if Jesus had this in mind when he instructed His disciples to not pray “religiously” pretentious prayers. Public prayers should flow naturally from the depth of your private practice of prayer!

  1. Am I praying to God in private or only in public?
  2. When I pray publicly do I pray to impress or to inspire? 
  3. Am I making prayer about me or about God?

Heavenly Father let the sincerity of my private prayer overflow in public prayers! Amen

By: Pastor Brad
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