Wayne Nall Jr
3/13/15 at 01:41 PM 0 Comments

The Greatest Single Ingredient Of A Successful Prayer Life

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This is the second in a series of articles on devotional life. You can read the first article "Why Pray?" here.

 Like any good habit, developing a successful prayer life takes effort. Rembrandt didn't just wake up one morning and paint the Mona Lisa. Michael Jordan didn't decide one day to play basketball, and the next day was signed by the Chicago Bulls. Yet, the big difference in worldly successes and being a successful person of prayer is that it takes no special talent to pray. IQ doesn't matter. Physical dexterity means nothing. But what does matter is that prayer is made and made habitually.

 There are many ingredient that make up a successful prayer life, some of which I hope to share in future articles. Yet, there is one ingredient which I believe stands out above all others. Without it, there is no chance that your prayer life will in any way be satisfactory to you or to God. With it, you can and should have a vibrant prayer life. What is this all-important key?

 Gratefulness.

 If you think about it, you know that this has to be true. Without gratefulness, prayer is an empty shell. We become like the whiny little kid who is always unsatisfied with what his parents do for him. Annoying, right? Well, when we go to Christ with all of our little requests, but don't first incorporate gratefulness, we really can't expect to get our prayers answered in the way we would hope.

How do we become grateful people in this gimme gimme gimme generation?

 Here are a few suggestions:

 1. Delight yourself in the Lord. Psalm 37:4 states "Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart." Want your prayers answered? First of all, delight in the Lord and in Him alone! If you are a Christian, no matter what bad things might be going on in your life, you have a wealth of things for which you can be thankful. In my case, I try to start each morning just being grateful for what the Lord has done for me. I often begin with my salvation in Christ:

  • "Thank you Jesus that You died for me, that You were willing to pay the ultimate price for my salvation."
  • "Thank you Father that You sent Your one and only Son to die in my place." (John 3:16)
  • "Thank you Holy Spirit for leading me to salvation,"
  • "My name is written in Your book." (Rev. 3:5)
  • "My name is written on Your hand." (Isa. 49:16)
  • "Because of You, I have a hope and a future!" (Jer. 29:11 NIV)
  • "Because You died for me, I have everlasting life...I'm going to live with You forever!"

Notice that none of these things have anything to do with what might be going on in my life right now. You or I could be facing seemingly insurmountable troubles, yet if we are followers of Christ, these eternal facts are still just as true as if we were dealing with no troubles at all. These are things that every Christian everywhere should express thankfulness for every day!

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