Tuesday, September 8, 2015

The Door to Prayer

Could it be that there is a door to prayer?
And the door that opens prayer might just be:

Thanks Giving

Have you noticed, as I have, how often the two are connected together: the giving of thanks, and prayer? There are many verses ...

"Don't worry about anything;
instead, pray about everything.
Tell God what you need,
and thank Him for all He has done."
(Philippians 4:6)

"It is good to give thanks to the Lord,
to sing praises to the Most High.
It is good to proclaim Your unfailing love in the morning,
Your faithfulness in the evening."
(Psalm 92:1-2)

''Always be joyful. Never stop praying.
Be thankful in all circumstances,
for this is God's will for you
who belong to Christ Jesus."
(I Thess. 5:16-18)

"Give thanks to Him who alone does mighty miracles.
His faithful love endures forever."
(Psalm 136:4)

Just why is the giving of thanks so important when we come before God? Do you suppose it is partly because having a spirit of thankfulness reveals that we also have a heart of humility? 

If we are proud and self-sufficient, we take credit for things ourselves. We depend on ourselves and our own accomplishments. But if we realize our own weaknesses, and realize how desperately we need help, then the door of our heart opens up to receive. And we are grateful, and we are thankful for even the smallest thing. 

Maybe this is why we so often find ourselves in great need. When we are in need, we more easily recognize His gifts. And when we recognize His gifts, we grow a heart of thankfulness. 

And thankfulness is what opens the door to prayer.

"He (Daniel) prayed three times a day,
just as he had always done,
giving thanks to his God."
(Daniel 6:10)

"I will offer you a sacrifice of thanksgiving
and call on the name of the Lord."
(Psalm 116:17)

"The only real prayers are the ones mouthed with thankful lips. Because gratitude ushers us into the other side of prayer, into the heart of the God-love, and all power to change the world resides here in His love. Prayer, to be prayer, to have any power to change anything, must first speak thanks." (Ann Voskamp)

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