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Inspired by Muslims

But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father...

Matthew 6: 6

I try to walk around a park every day during my lunch break. A few weeks ago, while walking with a friend, we noticed two young Muslim men praying on small rugs they had placed on the grass. My friend, who is not a Christian, asked me, "Do you guys pray as much as they do?" A little embarrassed, I said, "We should."

The truth is that not all Christians pray every day, and almost none pray five times a day as Muslims do. When Jesus taught His disciples to pray, He did not tell them "if you pray". He told them "When you pray." After all, if He, the Son of God, prayed so much and so often, we, His disciples, should pray much more than He did. Unfortunately, that is not always the case.

We have written thousands of books on prayer, have thousands of prayer meetings each month, have heard countless sermons about it, and yet many of us still struggle, trying to pray daily. Some Christians see prayer as something they do only when they are in trouble or when they are at church. Many do not develop a prayer life because they see it as I see the body of an athlete; they see it as something they could never have.

We have complicated prayer by making it a religious right and/or obligation, when in reality prayer is an amazing gift. It is a simple conversation between our heavenly Father and us, but it is powerful enough to bring heaven to earth. Can you imagine what the church of Jesus could do if we would pray daily?

I believe with all my heart that in this New Year, God is calling us to do what Jesus told us in Matthew 6. We need to go to our rooms, close the door, and talk to God every day. For some of us, to take time out of our busy schedules to pray could be difficult at first, but we must consider that time as an investment in our cities, our churches, and our families.

We can no longer see prayer as a way out of trouble. We live in a time when we cannot afford not to pray. We know enough about prayer. We have seen and heard enough people praying. It is time to learn to pray, by praying. It is time for us, regular church folks to pray. Those two young men inspired me not only to pray more, but also to pray for a prayer revival in our churches this year. We desperately need it.

I am praying that 2022 be a year in which Christians around the world pray, if not five times a day, at least more than we do now.

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