Prayer & Fasting - Day 3

Twenty-One Days of Prayer
Devotions for Families

DAY THREE – “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

The first two days you learned Jesus expects you to pray regularly! Yesterday we discovered Jesus encourages you to NOT pray religiously! Jesus emphasizes the need to pray for the right reward!

We shouldn’t think this way, especially as Christians but we do! We wonder, “What is in it for me?” We just do!

It is our nature to measure the cost against the reward. So, I find it somewhat comforting that Jesus acknowledges it in this insight about prayer. He doesn’t condemn it or condone it He just concedes it as true.

I’m sure we can agree that true spirituality is self-sacrificing rather than calculating. Perhaps that is one of the eventual rewards of praying regularly!

But having said that, Jesus’ main point here is that prayer DOES bring a reward!

Pointing to the religious leaders (a.k.a. – hypocrites) Jesus said, “They are receiving their reward!” They were praying to impress the crowds and apparently, they were. Congratulations, Hypocrites!

But the greater rewards of prayer are not immediately impressing people, they are:
  • Inner peace - When you commune with God in prayer and connect with Him through the Holy Spirit there is a deep abiding sense of peace that fills your spirit.
  • Inspiration - When God’s Spirit touches your spirit, He breathes the hope of His presence into you. When you quiet yourself before Him in prayer you will hear His voice speaking to you. 
  • Intimacy - When prayer is sincere, and, in the Spirit, God feels very real and very near!
  • Insight - Prayer that is inspired, and intimate allows God to impart insight, knowledge and understanding to you!

The greatest reward of praying properly is not just FROM Him it IS Him!
  1. Am I praying to impress people or have intimacy with God?
  2. What are some recent rewards I have recognized from my prayers?

Heavenly Father forgive me for the times I have prayed selfishly. Teach me to pray sincerely. I want to enjoy the greatest reward of prayer – relationship with You! In Jesus’ Name.

By: Pastor Brad
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