The Missing Prayer
By George Iskander
What component of prayer would you say you lacks most in your prayer life?
What surrounds us in all church services, that perhaps doesn’t make its way to the quiet prayer corner of our rooms?
What’s the common theme that resonates through the psalms?
Lets start by identifying the essential building blocks of a structured personal prayer. If we could summarize prayer into 5 components, what would they be? This is not an exhaustive list but rather 5 umbrella categories. Before you read ahead, try and think of what your personal prayers are comprised of.
We are taught from a young age to always give thanks. If you were to ask a child to pray, you will notice that this is how many start their prayers. Thanking God for health, for food, shelter, loved ones, the opportunity to know Him and stand before Him…etc. Thanksgiving is usually what defines the beginning of our prayer and is also illustrated as such in liturgical services and the Agpeya prayer book.
Naturally what follows is our human nature to ask and entreat the Lord the requests of our heart. God please help me in this exam, help me to get this job, help me find a partner…
Repentance is a very important element that we should include daily in our prayer life and is included in the Lord’s prayer; “Our Father…” Asking God to forgive our trespasses is an essential part of a Christian’s daily routine.
Asking for the prayers of the saints, or praying for each other. This is commonly how we are taught to conclude our prayers.
These 4 categories seem to cover it all. Often there is one aspect of prayer that is missing, kind of like the top piece of toast, it’s neglected, a lot of people don’t eat it, but in fact it’s what holds the bread together.
The 5th component is:
What is praise? Accurately defined:
Praise: an expression of approval or admiration, of gratitude and devotion for blessings received.
Praise of God: Acknowledging of His perfections, works and benefits.
(M. F. Unger 1988, The New Unger’s Bible Dictionary)
Why is praise so important?
By God’s grace, after reading this, we can all endeavour to make praise a part of our daily prayer.
Tune in for part TWO next week!