Have you ever heard someone say that he/she thinks their prayer life is great, all that it should be? I don’t think I have. We always want to grow as people of prayer. That desire itself is a good sign--the desire to be in constant fellowship with our Father. Don’t let Satan beat you down because your prayer life isn’t what you want it to be. Just keep growing in prayer by praying! It is a lifelong process of growth.
This week I read Jesus’ urgent warning to His disciples just as He was about to be arrested in Gethsemane: “Pray that you may not enter into temptation…Rise and pray that you may not enter into temptation” (Lk. 22:40,46 ESV). And we know the story, their lack of prayer as they slept in the Garden set them up for entering into and falling in temptation. They all deserted Him and fled. Peter denied Him with curses. Judas betrayed his Master, then hung himself instead of repenting.
Just prior to this incident Jesus had instructed His disciples that as the last days approach they should “…stay awake at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that are going to take place, and to stand before the Son of Man” (Lk. 21:36 ESV).
Look at the power of prayer to prepare us for trials and to protect us from temptation. No wonder He taught us to pray, “And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil…” (Mt. 6:13).
A vibrant prayer life can do much to ward off temptation and to prepare us for going through seasons of trial which He designs for our growth in holiness and fruitfulness. We shouldn’t be surprised, then, by the many distractions and hindrances to our prayer life. Neglect of prayer opens up the way for greater vulnerability to the attacks of Satan upon us, our families, our ministries and our churches.
“So Lord, teach us to pray…”