Keeping Prayer Simple Part 1

What a great Sunday we had talking about prayer.  If you missed the message, you can check out the podcast at  Let me get started talking about prayer…

As I said in my message on Sunday, Jesus simplified prayer because the religious leaders of His day made serving God complicated.  I cannot emphasize enough that it’s really not complicated.  Prayer is as simple as a personal conversation with God – sincere, honest, open dialogue.     Now Jesus taught us something interesting in Matthew 6:6 about our place of prayer.  He says to “go away by yourself, shut the door behind you, and pray to your Father in private.”  Now here are a couple of thoughts about simplified prayer from this verse:  First,  Jesus wants us to develop the habit of PERSONAL PRAYER.  Personal prayer is not prayer with our kids at bedtime or prayer over our meal.  Personal prayer is private time with God.  Many times we can be guilty of substituting prayer in church for personal prayer.  But Jesus is clear that we should develop a private time with God in prayer.  If you want to transform your walk with God, get alone with God.  Shut yourself in your bedroom or turn the CD off in your car in your commute.  Look for opportunities to be alone with God for 5 or 10 minutes.  Start with 1 or 2 days a week and work up to 4 or 5.  The second thing is this:  Try to shut the world out when you pray.  In other words, avoid any distractions.  I believe that 5 or 10 minutes of focused prayer is more effective that 1 hour of distracted prayer.  In my life, I literally shut the door of my study (and tell my kids – DO NOT DISTURB 🙂 )