40 Days of Prayer

Day 33: Eloquence

February 2, 2019

My Image

Your Father knows what you need before you ask him. Matthew 6:8

From Our “Here”…

I admire people who arrange complex ideas clearly and communicate them eloquently. You probably remember a favorite teacher or college professor with that gift. Maybe a pastor or other public speaker.

Times of prayer would be key moments to say something to greatest effect. We’re talking to God, our Creator, at His invitation, about those life issues we find most compelling.

Some prayers, when we hear them, are self-evidently powerful. Clearly, the person is in intimate conversation with heaven. There’s no pretension, posturing or selfish wish list. Just unhindered give and take with the Heavenly Father.

In my life, someone consistently comes to mind in that department. He might surprise you.

Our son Connor is 22 and, outwardly, severely constrained by cerebral palsy. But, wow, can he pray. It goes something like this…

Ohhhh…

It’s repeated a few times at varying lengths. Connor usually kicks in when he hears Jodie or me or one of his siblings offering a prayer. Sometimes, while we’re praying, we’ll hear him echo with a gentle Yesss…

He has a two-word vocabulary in his prayer lexicon. I suspect he gets a lot more across than I do with thousands of words at my disposal. When I listen to Connor pray, I’m reminded that the God who created every nuance of language is able to see right to the heart of what I need even when I don’t quite know how to express that myself.

…To God’s “There”

For me, Connor is a living reminder of Jesus’ promise: “Your Father knows what you need before you ask him” (Matthew 6:8).

Jesus wasn’t discouraging prayer. He followed that statement with the simple yet profound lines of the Lord’s Prayer. He invited us to remember that in the family of God our Heavenly Father’s heart is intimately grafted with ours.

Sometimes, when everything seems to be piling up to bury us, we can move mountains with a simple Ohhhh, Yesss! uttered in faith.

Making the Leap

As we obediently take part in the Great Commission, we come up against challenges to sharing the gospel. In the flash of a whispered prayer, we can gain needed insight to witness to a lost neighbor across the street or to a lost soul God has called us to reach at “the ends of the earth.”

Throughout the history of Christianity, effective missionaries—from the first century’s apostle Paul to the 21st century’s worldwide missionary force—have relied on prayer. Not only their own petitions, but on the faithful intercession of people like you and me. Perhaps you know of a missionary today who will benefit from your whispered Ohhhh, Yesss!

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