Daily Devotional

Matthew 6:7-8

"And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words. Therefore do not be like them. For your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him."

Do you remember being in school and having to write papers that had a word count requirement? As a college student back then, I learned how to pad my language, to say the same thing three different ways with the goal being to use as many words as possible. It wasn’t efficient at communicating a point but it sure did help to meet that word count quicker.

Sometimes we can do this with our prayers, especially when praying in front of others. It sounds good to make a long and eloquent prayer, and we can feel like really good christians who know just how to pray. But the point of prayer is not to look good, it is at its most basic level to talk to God. As I type that I have to pause as I think on that truth, we can talk to God. Have you ever stopped and wondered at that amazing fact? You, a mere mortal human can speak to, at your convenience, the all-knowing, all-mighty, creator of the universe. I need an appointment just to see my doctor!

Now I guess that last fact can make us think we need such flowery language, like we are making a speech at the U.N. But God just wants to talk to us. He wants us to come to Him with our problems, our concerns, our praises, and our thankfulness. God doesn’t want us to just say nonsense things over and over again in order to try and coerce Him into doing what we want… as if we could. There is no magical formula that you can say that will cause God to bless you just the way you want. He is God, not you. And He doesn’t even need you to tell Him your needs, He knows them all ready. But He wants you to tell Him. God, the Creator of the universe, wants to talk to you.

So remember when you are praying, you are not trying to pray with a word count for your college professor, or speak some special code of words to unlock God’s secret blessing for your life. Just speak honestly with God, He already knows your needs, but He wants your heart.
New King James Version (NKJV) Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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