Friday, 9 April 2021
About Prayer
By : Prathab V

Luke 22: 39-44

Prayers have brought me great joy and peace. But I have also been devastated by prayer. No, not that there’s something wrong with prayer. Just that I feel guilty for not spending enough time in prayer.

I am not very spiritual. At best, I am a mediocre person. I am far from the leagues of St Francis of Assisi or Billy Graham. Why can’t I just spend more time in prayer? Is five minutes enough? 15 minutes? How about 30 minutes in silent meditation and prayer?

But even in my mediocrity, I have learned to glorify God. John White in his book “The Fight: A Practical Handbook for Christian Living”, writes: “It matters not how much you’ve got but what you do with it. Use your mediocre gifts for God. Give him your life and with it your brain and your gifts, such as they are. Give him your energy, your time and your strength.”

In my mediocrity, I wrestle during prayer. My body demands more sleep. My mind constantly urges me to do other pleasurable things such as watching sports or a movie.

It is also hard to keep my mind still and focused on God during prayer. In group prayer, when a friend starts to pray, my mind races elsewhere especially if it is a very long prayer. During long prayers, I start thinking about what I should pray for when my turn comes up. I even think about using sophisticated theological terms to impress others.

During those times, the Spirit of God rebukes me sharply for having such carnal thoughts. Rather than looking at the sin of others, I learn more about my sins during prayer. I need not use words to impress others. I don’t have to impress God. I must not ‘start preaching’ when praying.

Prayer is unto God. It is a request from men to God. That is all. It need not be a long prayer nor a short prayer – just enough words to speak to God in reverence and humility and wait upon Him.

Reading the prayers of Jesus, I am amazed at how short they were (except for John 17). Although there were instances, where God answered the prayers of Jesus in an extraordinary manner, at other times, the Son of God heard only silence.

In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus prayed till his sweat became as drops of blood on the rocks. But there was only silence from heaven. Instead, an angel was sent to strengthen Jesus (Luke 22:43).

As I read Luke 22, I am stunned that the Son of Man, the Saviour of the World, needed to be strengthened by an ordinary angel (not even an archangel!). But Jesus did not complain that the Father did not speak to Him at Gethsemane.

Although Jesus was emotionally sorrowful at Gethsemane, He was spiritually strong inside. He agonised but was determined to finish His mission.

These days, I do not seek any spectacular experience during prayer. Rather, I just yield to God in humility and trust Him alone. I wait on Him and depend not on how I feel, but on what He wants me to do. I pray, it will be the same with you.

Prayer:

Lord Jesus, teach me to pray and learn to trust in Your wisdom. Teach me Lord to patiently wait on You in silence so that I may know what You are saying to me. Let my mind not wander during prayer, but stay yielded to You alone in every way. In Jesus’ name, I ask, AMEN.

每日灵粮
星期五,2021年4月9日
标题:“关于祷告”
作者:帕拉他伯(Prathab V)
翻译:陈月妃

路加福音22:39-44

祈祷给我带来了极大的喜乐与平安。但我也曾为了祈祷而身心交瘁。不,我并不是说祈祷有什么问题。只是我为没有花足够的时间祈祷而感到愧疚。
我并不是一个很属灵的人。充其量,我只是一个平庸的普通人。我的水平远比不上圣弗朗西斯(St Francis of Assisi)或葛培理(Billy Graham)。为什么我不能多花点时间祈祷呢?五分钟够吗?15分钟?默想和祈祷30分钟怎么样?

但即使我是多么的平庸,我也学会了荣耀上帝。约翰•怀特(John White)在他的《抗争:基督徒生活实用手册》(The Fight: A Practical Handbook for Christian Living)一书中写道:“重要的不是你拥有多少,而是你如何使用它。把你平庸的恩赐献给上帝。把你的生命,你的头脑,你的恩赐如实的交给祂,把你的精力、时间和力量交给祂。”

在平庸中,我在祈祷的时候经常自我搏斗。我的身体需要更多的睡眠。我的思想不断催促我去做其他令人愉悦的事情,例如观看体育节目或看电影。

在祷告的过程中,我也很难保持清晰的意识,专注于神。在小组祈祷中,当一个朋友开始祈祷时,我的思绪会在别处跳跃,特别是如果这是一个很冗长的祈祷。在冗长时间的祈祷中,我开始思考轮到我的时候我应该祈祷什么。我甚至想过用复杂的神学术语来打动别人。

每当这时,上帝的灵就会因我有这种属肉体的思想而斥责我。与其专注于他人的过错,我在祷告中了解更多自己的罪恶。我不需要用许多的字眼来打动人心。我不必打动上帝。我不应该在祷告中“开始传教”。

祷告的对象是神。这是人类向上帝的恳求。仅此而已。这并不需要冗长的祷告,或是简短的祷告,只要用足够的言语来恭敬谦卑地与神说话,并等候祂。

读了耶稣的祷告,我惊讶于它们是多么的简短(除了约翰福音第17章)。尽管在某些情况下,上帝以非凡的方式回应了耶稣的祷告,但在很多时候,上帝的儿子听到的只是沉默。

在客西马尼园里,耶稣祷告直到汗珠如大血点滴在地上。然而天堂只是一片寂静。有一位天使从天上显现、加添他的力量。(路加福音22:43)。

当我阅读路加福音第22章的时候,我惊讶地发现人子,这世界的救世主,竟然需要一个普通的天使(甚至不是天使长)来加添他的力量。但是耶稣却没有埋怨天父在客西马尼园没有对祂说话。

尽管耶稣在客西马尼园中极其伤痛,但祂在灵里是极其坚强的。祂虽痛苦不堪,但却决心完成祂的使命。

这些天来,我不求在祷告中有任何令人惊叹的经历。相反的,我只是谦卑地向上帝降服,单单信靠祂。我等候祂,不在于我的感受如何,而在于祂要我做什么。我祈愿,你也和我一样。

祷告:

主耶稣,求你教导我如何祷告并学习倚靠你的智慧。主啊,教我耐心的静默等候你,好使我知道你要向我说的话。让我的思绪不在祷告的时候飘忽不定,而是在各方面都单单的降服于你。我奉耶稣的名祈求,阿门。