Our concept of prayer can get a little skewed as we age. When we are younger, if we know Jesus, we are more apt to simply pour out our heart. Whatever we have on our hearts we share. As we get older, we are “taught” how to pray. We see people praying in a certain way. We are told that we should pray in a particular manner. Something that should be so natural and simple and second nature becomes more uptight, foreign, fancy, disconnected, and boxed in with rules. It is almost as if some people believe that there’s a particular way that you must pray if you want to receive an answer, or that if you do not pray in a certain manner, your prayer is not good enough.
All of this becomes a stumbling block. People avoid talking to our heavenly Father for fear that they will mess up, that they won’t stay the “right things” or because they do not think they know what words and phrases must be said. The little girl who was so quick to speak with Jesus has grown up, and now worries that she will go unheard if she shares something that others say is improper or is something that shouldn’t be brought to God. It’s sad. We always have a talent for getting in the way of our relationship with God, and we often go a step further by being a stumbling block for others, whether intentionally or not. Let us pray that we are able to get over all of this nonsense , get back to the truth, and share with God the desires of our heart.
The Psalmist says in Psalm 88:13, “Lord, You know my prayer before I even whisper it. At each and every sunrise You will continue to hear my cry until You answer” (TPT). I love this truth — God knows your prayer even before it is whispered through your lips. Whether you share what others say is not good enough, not proper enough, not the prayer to share, He already knows it. He knows your heart. He knows what you want and He knows what you need. Before you even whisper. The real fruit of prayer is the relationship with the Father. As a kid will sometimes say things to a parent that can cause laughter or disgust, or even be raw and gritty with honesty, so we should approach the Father with this same honesty and pureness. In the end, it’s always about relationship— about being connected to the Father. Do not let anyone get in the way of this special intimacy with Him. Speak to Him as you did as the little boy or girl from many years before. Stop worrying if the words will be “wrong” or “not good enough.” We honor Him most when we are real with Him, when we humbly give Him our heart, and we glorify His name through our acknowledgement of His goodness, His love, His power, His mercy and grace, and His provision. Prayer opens the door for great things to happen, and it all starts with you and God meeting together.