Wednesday, October 27, 2010

My Struggle With Prayer

I don’t know if there has ever been a time that I have felt comfortable with my prayer life. My struggle has not been because of lack of understanding but for lack of time. I don’t know if I can express my struggle in a story or in a bunch of sayings. What follows is my prayer, a disciple’s prayer, as I meditate on Luke 11:1, “Now Jesus was praying in a certain place, and when He finished, one of his disciples said to Him, ‘Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples.’”

Lord Jesus, the disciples had the privilege of watching You pray. Oh, what a privilege. I can only imagine. I would love to have seen You pray. I would love to hear You talk with Your Father. I would love to know what Your prayer was like—Your yearnings, Your praises, Your struggles, Your joy.

Lord, I wish I could have seen You because I would hope it would motivate me to pray more. Here I come again, Lord, with the same question the disciples had. Lord, teach me to pray. How many times have I asked this? I am sorry. You’d think I would have learned it by now. I feel like I keep flunking grade school and I am back trying to do it all over again.

As ashamed as I am to come again with this prayer, I can’t help but acknowledge that deep within me is a burning desire to be a pray-er. I read the accounts of biblical characters and other saints who have a deep prayer life and I want it, God, I really want it.

How much am I missing out on? How I long to be like John and cling to You and hear You speak. How I long to be in better tune with You. I want to honor You with this part of my life. I don’t want to run off and do things in my own strength. I want to be in deep connection with You. I want to be in prayer with You.

Have there been times that not only I but others have missed out on Your blessings because I have failed to spend sufficient time with You, praying for myself and for others? How much better could my preaching be? How much more aware could I be of what You are doing in others?

I know all of these things. I know how much more I can be in You. And yet, here I come again. I am sorry. Teach me how to pray.

Is there a secret, Lord, because I want it. Help me to pray more, to pray better, and to pray more often. Give me more grace, Lord, because if we are going to count on me, we won’t get anywhere. Lord, give me a deeper hunger. Will you put an ache in my heart that can only be healed by prayer? I desperately want to see You more in my life, more in our church, more in our community.

Lord, like Moses I pray, “Lord, show me Your glory!” I want to see Your glory come down to this place. Revive Your great Name. Make Yourself awesome in our midst. Send Your Holy Spirit to us, Lord. I know we want to be Your people who live like Your people. I know we want to be more like Jesus. I know we want to see the dry bones live. Lord, bring revival not for my sake, not for the church’s sake, but for Your sake. Bring glory to Your Name. Lord, I want to see revival in our land, and I know You ask us to pray for it, so I am praying.

Lord, here I come again and ask You to teach me to pray. What You have is the desire of my heart. I know You can answer prayer. I know You ask me to pray. So here I come, Lord. Teach me to pray, Lord Jesus. Teach me to pray!


  1. This is a keeper. Thanks Deryk, for your prayer and for you. Cindy

  2. Deryk- you are gifted at revealing your heart's desire and once again your article brings to mind how my ego can cause me to forget about who the director of my life really is. This is a subject that no matter how diligent I appear to be, my prayer life seems to be lacking the true hunger it ought to have in seeking God's help.(especially in the evening..when I'm about ready to turn in) I must remember that God is on call 24 hours a day and he like any other parent would like us to check in. Sometimes I fail to appreciate his omnipresence and think of him as having human-like qualities such as "conditional"love as opposed to"unconditional" love..which he displays. I personally think he likes it when we come to him as we are-sometimes broken, sometimes joyful or both. He is the only one that can improve our spiritual condition and our appetite for him. I sometimes feel that when I am at the most desperate place I reach out to God and I should..but I should have been building my relationship with him all along! Finally, I can only say that with my continued efforts to please God everyday humbly with prayer and thanksgiving for revealing himself to me and his forgiveness can I begin and build and minimize that communication gap between us. life. Afterall, don't we all want to be with our Father after a hard days work? Jennifer

  3. Pastor, thanks so much for your honesty. Revealing to God our true selves is the first step we need to take, I think.

  4. Thank you for your transparency to us and to God. I find I grow the most in my humble honesty and in seeing others struggle as I do. Love in Christ to you.