During this pandemic, some of the strongest muscles of the church are hampered in their normal functioning: corporate worship and growth groups. So we are being forced to use muscles that may not be as well developed like prayer, daily devotions, and even hospitality.
In the history of the church, when difficulty strikes—persecution, transitions, disruptions—the muscle of prayer takes a prominent place.
Jesus’ disciples asked “teach us how to pray.” So Jesus taught them using parables, object lessons, and a model prayer—“Our Father who art in Heaven…”
All of these resources are attempting to teach us the right way to pray. Jesus taught us that the right way to pray is to become like a little child.
Read Mark 10:14-15
“Let the little children come to me. Don’t stop them, because the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I tell you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”
The right way to approach God for salvation (the kingdom/rule of God) is to become like a little child. It is also the right way to approach the throne room of God in prayer—become like a little child.
What are the characteristics of children that we should emulate in prayer?
Children don’t clean themselves up before seeking the presence of their loved ones. They approach with running noses, dirty hands, shoes on the wrong feet and shirts on backwards.
• Do you recall a “messy” time in your life when you accessed God in prayer?
A child does not filter what she is saying. Their words are honest and blunt. Jesus warned his disciples to be without pretense.
• In what ways are we pretentious in our prayers?
Children are learning magnets. Every place is a schoolroom and everything is intriguing to their curiosity.
• What are you curious enough about to actually ask God?
Children want to be near their loved ones. You can have the most elaborate playroom in the subdivision, yet your child would prefer to be playing on the floor by your easy chair where you are sitting.
When a child is tired or afraid, they want you to hold them.
When a child is glad to see you, they want to sit in your lap.
• Can you recall times in your life when you simply wanted to know that God was present with you and that He cared?
Jesus said, “Come to Me. all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest” (Mt 11:28).