Fresh Hope – 1st May 2020

More than ever today, prayer should be seen as huge privilege—a privilege God has freely given to us because He wants to spend time with us. Here is the truth about prayer…God wants to hear from you! 
Now of course, prayer by its very nature often carries with it a burden; if you are praying for someone that is fighting off the coronavirus, you will have a burden for them that is driving you to your knees. However, prayer should not be a burden but more so a privilege. 

Jesus died to destroy the barrier of sin that separates us from God, and when we surrender our lives to God we have a personal relationship with Him. In fact, we only have access to God through prayer because of what Jesus did for us in His death and resurrection. He opened the way for us once and for all to come freely to Him. 

Central to any relationship is communication. Whether it’s a father that never talks to his children, or a married couple that never speak to each other, it’s a recipe for a relationship breakdown. The reality is that a father will always be related to his son or daughter and vice versa, but the question is will you be in relationship with them and they with you?

At a far greater spiritual level, our relationship with God involves communication; not just a brief hello, but a much deeper level of sharing our cares, concerns and requests with Him. Prayer is a daily, ongoing, and developing walk with God. 
To put it simplistically, prayer is talking with and listening to God – it’s a two way street just like any other relationship. 

God could of course simply do everything on His own. He could make every problem go away, sort all your burdens out, and then just shower you with everything you need exactly at the time you need it…so why doesn’t He? Because that wouldn’t be a relationship; it would be a completely one-sided acquaintance. All that we would need to do is give Him a nod to acknowledge His existence each morning and then leave the rest to Him. 

God has given us the privilege of prayer so that we will have a moment by moment friendship and relationship with Him that is deeper than any human relationship we could ever have. When we understand that, every human relationship goes to a whole new level too. 

There are some things that my children have asked me for over the years that I haven’t been able to supply — I’m limited and flawed as a father. But then there are times when I’ve sorted things straight away, because it’s within my means and power to do so. Often my phone will ring and the voice on the other end is saying, “Dad…can you…?” The truth is that any Dad LOVES to be asked for things, or asked to do things by his children. It’s what makes the relationship work. Then there are times that I will ask things of my children (usually internet related) and they are happy to help. Once again it makes for great relationships. 

At other times, maybe I will need to talk to them about something or give them advice or encouragement —and so it is with God. He wants you to not only communicate with Him as a child to a father, but He also wants to communicate with you. 

Jesus demonstrated the importance of prayer by His own example…
Mark 1:35 Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed. 

Today, I encourage you to engage with God in the privilege of prayer. 

Did you charge your phone today? Of course you did! You remembered to do it because it was important and you needed it to get you through the day. 

Did you pray today? Are you praying throughout today? You have, and you will, when you come to the understanding that you need a spiritual re-charge not only at the start of my day but throughout everyday as day to day life drains me. 

Be a person of prayer. Be a person that’s plugged into the power of God. 

1 John 5:14-15 This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us – whatever we ask – we know that we have what we asked of him. 

Pastor Mark

A daily devotion for a better way of living.