The Depths of Your Heart

MAY 25

MATTHEW 6:6_and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret…

Jesus says the Father is in the closet with you.  When He says the Father seeth in secret He means more than vision. God reads your soul. He sees everything in your mind and thoughts. God sees deeply – into the very depths of your heart. He knows if there is room for Him in that depth, or if it is consumed with you.

God also knows if your desire is to replace self with the Savior. He can help you with that.

God’s desire is for you to bring all your emotions of pain, heartbreak, fear, anger, and unforgiveness to Him in prayer. If you can trust God is with you in the closet, you will begin to trust He is with you anywhere. The more you trust in God’s presence, the more confident you will grow in your relationship with Him. 

Listening is every bit as important to prayer time as talking. Remember that falling in love sequence? If you do all the talking, and never any listening, then you will not know your loved one at all. It’s difficult to truly love someone you don’t know.

The more you hear God, the more you become salt and light.

PRAYER

God Who Speaks, Please speak to my heart, and help me trust You are always with me. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.

Christ is with me—I want to be with Him!

In The Closet

MAY 24

MATTHEW_6:6 and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret…

Prayer time in the closet is a two way street. In order to give more emphasis, Jesus says more than enter the closet. He adds shut the door. This is even more private, more intimate. A closed door keeps the outside in its place – out. It also keeps the inside in its place – behind a closed door.

This is a time to pour out your heart – all those innermost thoughts, hopes, and dreams. Outside the door are the things which distract – social media, games, sports, TV. Inside the closet are only you and the Heavenly Father. 

This is a time to learn more of the One who loves you so deeply. This is how it becomes a two way street. It’s not just you speaking with the Father. It is also the Father speaking with you. You have a heart full to say to Him, and the Father has a heart full to say to you.

To hear everything the Father has to say requires Bible time as well as prayer time. Adding the Bible into your prayer life (like those Psalms) is a great way to learn to pray.

PRAYER

God Who Hears, Praise You that You hear every word of my mouth, and every beat of my heart. I long to hear You as well. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.

 Christ hears all my prayers—I will hear His words to me!

Prayer Encourages Seekers

MAY 20

MATTHEW 6:5_thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are for they love to pray in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men…

Oh my goodness! Here we go with the hypocrites again! And, they are back in the synagogues and the streets! Jesus doesn’t want the praying there any more than He wanted the alms giving there.

Don’t get confused about this – the devil would love to deceive you into believing that you should not pray out loud. If you are a part of a youth group that prays together – stay with it and pray together.. 

Praying out loud is a part of the salt and light process. Prayer encourages seekers who may be a part of your group. Helping the seekers find their way is what salt and light are meant to do.

When Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead He prayed out loud. John 11:41-42 (KJV), “And Jesus lifted up his eyes, and said, Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me. And I knew that thou hearest me always: but because of the people which stand by I said it, that they may believe that thou hast sent me.”

There was a large crowd gathered to comfort the sisters of Lazarus. Jesus purposely prayed out loud. Any unbelievers in the group would know first, that Jesus was sent by God, and second, that God always hears prayer.

The result was the greatest miracle Jesus performed in His earthly life!

PRAYER

God of Heaven, Please let my prayers give attention to You, not me! In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen. 

Christ’s prayers were salt and light—mine should be too!

Don’t Try to Live Without It!

  MAY 19

MATTHEW 6:5_And when thou prayest…

Prayer is a necessity in the Christian life. Don’t try to live even one day without it. I Thessalonians 5:17 (KJV), “Pray  without ceasing.”

No one wants to go a full day without speaking to someone they love. If you don’t love Jesus, talk to Him anyway – you may soon find Him to be your friend. It takes time to truly love. There is such a thing as love at first sight, but if that’s all there ever is and love goes no further than sight – that won’t get it done. You have to know the person who has caused your heart to skip beats. Time must be spent in communication. 

Prayer is communication. There is nothing in your heart you cannot tell Jesus. The fact that He already knows what’s there does not stop Him from wanting to hear your voice. Jesus desires your deep, intimate, communication – just as any two people who are in love.

Get to know the book of Psalms. They may be written for songs, but they make for some kind of awesome prayers! No matter your situation, there is a Psalm to express your heart. Pray a Psalm in first person.

If it is a prayer of brokenness, it’s okay to weep. If it is a prayer of joy, then sing praise. 

Simply let your heart express itself.  

PRAYER

Lord of All, Thank You that You hear my heart, and my feeble words. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen. 

Christ prayed—He will teach me!

In a Tight Spot

DECEMBER 14

MATTHEW 7:26_And everyone that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not…

In Mark chapter 8 (KJV) Jesus feeds over four thousand people with seven loaves of bread and a few fish.  “So they [the people] did eat, and were filled: and they [the disciples] took up of the broken meat that was left seven baskets.”

Later, when Jesus was wearied of the Pharisees’ nagging, He enters a boat with His disciples, “14 Now the disciples had forgotten to take bread, neither had they in the ship with them more than one loaf.” Jesus begins to teach the disciples about the character of the Pharisees. The disciples thought He was fussing at them for forgetting the bread. “17 And when Jesus knew it [that the disciples were nervous], he saith unto them, Why reason ye, because ye have no bread? perceive ye not yet, neither understand? have ye your heart yet hardened? 18 Having eyes, see ye not? and having ears, hear ye not? and do ye not remember?”

We feel like criticizing the disciples. They not only had witnessed the miracle of feeding over four thousand, and previously witnessed Him feeding over five thousand, but —Jesus used them to pass out the bread!

Let’s not be too hasty to criticize. In a tight spot, we quickly tend to side with anxiety over the power of our Rock.

PRAYER

Righteous Lord, Help me remember Your greatness and power every day. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.          

Christ wants us to remember His power—I will!