“When you pray…” (Matthew 6:5).
“When you pray…” (Matthew 6:6).
“When you pray…” (Matthew 6:7).
Interesting. Jesus assumes that his disciples are praying. Jesus doesn’t say, “Should you pray, ” or “If you pray.” Jesus simply assumes, “When you pray.”
So, is that the case with you?
If you are praying, you will encounter resistance. Things get busy. You’ve got a life to live. But the biggest hindrance to prayer, if you have a conscience, is guilt. See, we are all sinners. Not only that, we are repeat sinners. And we go to God with the same ol’ sins over and over. And, in time, guilt and shame overwhelm us.
That guilt and shame? Should the guilt and shame lead us to pray and trust God more, great. But, there are times, when guilt and shame causes us to run from God.
Remember what happened in the Garden when the first couple sinned?
“Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the LORD God among the trees of the garden” (Genesis 3:8).
Shame does that. It makes us want to escape God’s holiness.
When that happens, fight it. Push through it. When you want to run from God, instead, RUN TO GOD!
Never limit your prayers because you think you are sinful and undeserving. You’re not praying because of who you are. You are praying because of who God is.
It is absolutely true that you are sinful and undeserving. That’s why you need God’s grace and forgiveness even more. There was never a time when we were not sinful and undeserving. So, don’t let that keep you from praying. That would be silly. God already knows we are sinful and undeserving. That’s why God makes a way for repeat sinners to become sons and daughters in Jesus Christ.
Keep on praying!