Matthew 6 verse 7: "But when ye pray, use not vain repititions, as the heathen do; for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking."
One Sunday night, I had the privilege to lead the adult Bible study at my home church. I taught on prayer and about the importance of the prayer coming straight from your heart. All of us have heard many prayers; in fact, I once heard a prayer that lasted over an hour. Some prayers offered up say the same thing, "Lord bless our church, be with the pastor as he brings the message, bless our country, bless all the sick, shutins, and those in the nursing homes, etc". Some prayers that I have heard I could recite from memory...they were the same as if memorized, and not from the heart.
That particular night, the spirit moved amongst us and the Lord graciously blessed our service. There was an elderly man attending that night and his name was George. He had been having some medical problems, and family problems. I knew that he loved Jesus, but he was kind of shy and I had never heard him pray out loud. After I finished the Bible study, I asked that we all gather in a circle, hold hands and pray, asking for the Lord's help in our times of need. The Lord moved on me to ask George to begin the prayer. All eyes were closed, and every head was bowed, and there was a silence of a few minutes. Then I heard George's feeble voice, He prayed, "Lord, this here is George and you know what lies heavy on my heart." That was his prayer. As soon as he uttered these short words, the spirit of the Lord moved in a special way among all of us. There was not a dry eye in that group, we all felt the humbleness of George's prayer, and the child like faith that he had. What a wonderful ending to a Bible study on prayer!
About four months later, the Lord called George home. At his funeral, the preacher spoke of the time George had prayed, and what a blessing it was to hear those heartfelt words. That prayer touched the throne of God, and many lives. Praise the Lord for George's testimony!
Luke 18 verse 13: "And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner."
Copyright 2005, Irvin L. Rozier
Read more articles by Irvin Rozier or search for articles on the same topic or others.