Lord, Teach Us How To Pray
The disciples saw something in Jesus that they lacked. So one asked him, “Teach us how to pray” (Luke 11:1). Can we develop this spiritual quality? Can we learn how to pray? Certainly we can, and we must, in order to stay strong through the temptations and trials of life.
Think of the times of day when Jesus was found praying in the Gospels. Like Paul’s admonition, “Pray without ceasing,” we find Jesus praying at all times of day. When his ministry began to accelerate in the city of Capernaum, we find Jesus, before daylight, finding a place to pray alone (Mark 1:35-38). On another occasion, he went up into a mountain alone and prayed all night (Luke 6:12). Certainly we ought to begin and end every day, talking to our Father in heaven.
Consider the occasions when the Lord prayed. At his baptism, which commenced his earthly ministry, he prayed. The night before he chose from his disciples twelve apostles, he prayed at length (Luke 6:12). When he heard of John’s execution, he withdrew and talked with his Father (Matthew 14:13,23). Upon a mountain, he was praying in the presence of Peter, James, and John, and he was transfigured before their eyes, and they heard the Majestic Voice testify concerning his glory and honor (Luke 9:28-29; cf. 2 Peter 1:16-18).
Shortly before the Lord’s death, he prayed in the upper room (Matthew 26:26-28), interceeded for his disciples (John 17), poured out his soul in the Garden of Gethsemane (Matthew 26:36-46), and had prayed at some point especially on Peter’s behalf (Luke 22:31-32).
Likewise, on the cross the Lord was observed in prayer — for others, as well as for himself. In the hours of trial, leading up to, and on the cross, the Lord’s concern was the will and plan of God. That led him to think about the spiritual condition of others. It strengthened him to accomplish his part in the redemptive plan.
Evaluate your spirituality with the help of Jesus, as he teaches us how to...