Is prayer difficult for you? Do you often find you don’t know how to pray or simply what to say? This may be a rare occurrence for some readers and a common one for others. Ultimately I do not know how common something like this is and I am sure it varies, however what I can say is that it is something I have struggled with many times and would imagine all Christians have at some point in their lives.
Nevertheless, its commonality is irrelevant, for having trouble praying is not something to be embarrassed about if you struggle with it. Conversely it is not something to be proud of if you rarely have trouble praying.
The point is that facing challenges in your prayer life is an important topic. While the frequency of difficult seasons of prayer varies from person to person, it will happen at some point or another in the life of every Christian. In fact this very challenge is mentioned in scripture.
Today we will focus our attention on how the Holy Spirit helps us in prayer, including in the difficult seasons. Let’s see what scripture says.
26) Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.
27) And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God.Romans 8:26-27 (KJV)
One of the most comforting doctrines in the Bible is that the Holy Spirit always prays and intercedes for us, even when we do not know what to say or how to pray. In times of greatest difficulty this rings most true to us.
When the burden to pray for a loved one looms tremendously great on our souls and hearts, when the gravity of a situation is so strong, during the times when our stamina has run its course and we are worn out from waiting for prayers to be answered, in these instances and many others it can be difficult to know what to pray or even to pray at all. “Prayer is a connection to God Himself and in His infinite power He can certainly understand the intent of the heart. God is not limited; He knows your needs.”
We know that God can handle any situation yet when a situation seems dire or too confusing, sometimes all we can do is cry out or pray through sobs and tears. Once more, prayer becomes a challenge.
There is good news however for this is where the Holy Spirit comes to our aide; remember He is our Helper.
7) Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.John 16:7 (KJV)
In fact, in Greek ‘Comforter’ can also mean ‘Helper’, ‘Advocate’ and/or ‘Intercessor’. Isn’t it amazing how much God gives us? Remember He sent the Holy Spirit to us to help us.
His grace is amazing and it becomes more amazing each and every day of the Christian’s life. Not only does He give us a home in heaven but also the Holy Spirit to help us at all times, even in prayer.
God certainly requires much of us as Christians yet with His aide, His burden truly is light if we allow it to be, that is if we obey. Obedience in prayer means persisting in prayer, no matter what. Even when words cannot come, at the very least try to pray, for prayer is a connection to God Himself and in His infinite power He can certainly understand the intent of the heart. God is not limited; He knows your needs.
Therefore, weary Christian worn out from countless moments of desperate prayer, self-conscious Christian who does not know what to pray when called upon in front of a group, scared Christian whose sin has beset you to hide from God, worried to approach Him for forgiveness, and to all of us who will at times struggle with prayer, let us remain confident and pray with the strength of the Holy Spirit’s intercession for us.
When you do not know what to say or how to say it, pray what is on your heart and mind and let the Holy Spirit handle the rest, for your prayers will be heard just as they should be. Soli Deo Gloria!