For many people, especially early in their spiritual journey, prayer is sorta like eating your vegetables—it doesn’t sound fun. It doesn’t taste great but you know it’s good for you. It’s the thing that you do, if you’re a “good Christian”. Maybe you’ve heard the phrase “spiritual disciplines” and prayer is typically at the top of the list. But when we think of prayer this way it becomes a duty. It falls immediately into the category of things we know we ought to do instead of things we truly want to do.

As the disciples lived with Jesus 24/7 and observed their Messiah praying, they must have seen something different. For Jesus, prayer was not a discipline or a duty. Prayer was a delight.

Prayer wasn’t steamed broccoli, it was more like an ice cream sundae.

Luke 5 tells us that Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed. In Luke chapter 6 Jesus spent the whole night praying to God! In Luke 9 Jesus prayed with his disciples on a mountain and he was literally transformed in prayer—the appearance of his face changed and his clothes became as bright as a flash of lightning. Jesus prayed differently. Jesus prioritized prayer, he went out of his way to make sure he spent time with his Father in prayer. For the Son of God, prayer was a delight. It was time spent with the one who knew him best and loved him most. Prayer was the chance to connect with a perfect God and Father who had a perfect plan of redemption that would bring Jesus and the whole world perfect peace.
If you struggle to pray, you are not alone. We are living through one of the most challenging times in human history to pray. Our smartphones alone intrude massively on opportunities to pray. Our busy lives full of distractions, our attention divided between numerous demands, our advances in technology, while amazing, can all contribute to not praying. Why ask God when Google answers faster?

And yet, author John Mark Comer says, “Prayer is the portal to life with God”. In the gospel of John 10:10 Jesus says that he came that we may have life and have life to the full! Life with God is life to the full, it’s the kind of life that we all are designed to desire deep within our bones. Prayer is the doorway in. What we really want, what we really need is more of Him. Psalm 37:4 says “Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart.” When I delight in spending time with God in prayer, my heart shifts and my desires align with what my perfect Father who loves me most, wants for me.

God, may prayer time with you be a delight.

Donielle Winter

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