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Prayer and The Holy Spirit
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“Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but that very Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words. And God, Who searches the heart, knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.” (Rom. 8:26, 27 NRSV)
One of the roles of the Holy Spirit in the life of a believer is to intercede for him/her and thus helping in their weakness. Human beings are born into an imperfect weak world. I am not talking about the strength and courage to fight the dark sides of life, but about our spiritual growth which is developing but at the same time needs the power of God to stand erect. You can fight for a social issue with or without God’s help, but this rule doesn’t apply in the spiritual warfare.
Many people do not even know why we ought to pray. They just see it as their means to get whatever they want. But among the needs for prayer, one most important is to help accomplish God’s will, here on earth. Prayer is putting God’s will first, while in the natural sense, people put a list of their wishes before the feet of God. When we give God’s perfect righteous will the first place in prayer, we are battling against the forces of evil that want everyone to get derailed from God’s gracious purposes and end up in eternal failure.
Words do not make up a good prayer. It is how you relate your heart to the issue being prayed that makes the difference! If you yourself are not passionate and thirsty for the need to be fulfilled or the problem to be solved, how can you be a genuine man of prayer? Many, let me repeat, many are desirous about only their personal and family necessities. But a true Christian is one who takes the problems of others as his/her own and prays for it with the same passion and willingness as when praying for their own needs.
Even though how far we reach the lesson of prayer, every Christian is weak. The weakness is explained: we do not know how to pray as we ought. Many fail to understand this point and are satisfied with the contents of their prayer. The listeners may assume that he/she is an expert in prayer. But that’s not truth!
The Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words. The words (of any language on earth) have their limit before the omniscience of God. There are many things, in the spiritual realm, that words can’t explain. The Holy Spirit Who knows well everything intercedes for us according to the will of God. He is our Prayer-Helper. It takes courage and humility to surrender all our ‘prayer expertise’ to the feet of the Holy Spirit.
Remember, it is not told that we do not know ‘what’ to pray but that we do not know ‘how’ to pray. You can know the difference only when you submit yourself in prayer, before the guidance of the Holy Spirit. As humans, we can’t say what words the Spirit speaks on our behalf, but be confident that we are given careful consideration.
It is totally a different thing to pray by one’s own efforts and to pray with the help of the Holy Spirit. Let the Holy Spirit do His role, and we will see dynamic changes in and among us. Prayer is not limited to the individual alone, but is connected to everything that comes under God’s purpose. Let us keep this in mind.
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