Prayer is much greater than bringing a list of requests to God. Prayer is letting Jesus Himself come into our midst to commune with us and glorify His name through meeting our needs. Our Lord’s heart cry is evident in Revelation 3:20, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me.” O. Hallesby, in his classic book entitled Prayer, commented as follows:
“I doubt that I know of a passage in the whole Bible that throws great light upon prayer than this one does. It is, it seems to me, the key which opens the door into the holy and blessed realm of prayer.”
“To pray is nothing more involved than to let Jesus into our needs. To pray is to give Jesus permission to employ His powers in the alleviation of our distress. To pray is to let Jesus glorify His name in the midst of our needs.”
Commenting on the Hallesby excerpt, Oliver Price in Pray with Christ, went on to say:
“Private prayer is necessary, but we also need to pray with others, striving to unite under the headship of Christ and His shepherd care. Praying with others in His presence under His active leadership is also necessary. A lady known for her fervent prayers said, ‘That’s where the power is.’ Another lady commented, ‘We need to listen to one another’s hearts in the presence of God.’”
“Certainly, we need the power of God’s Spirit breathing in and through us as we pray. Praying corporately can be structured so as to focus on the presence of Christ and unite our prayers under His life-transforming headship. The church began not as a preaching service with a small prayer meeting (Acts 1:14); rather, the church was a prayer meeting.”
One final word. There are many subtle substitutes for Jesus. Of course, we might all recognize sinful things, carnal things, fleshly things, secular things, man’s wisdom, good ideas, but even noble causes and good things can take the place of the best thing—Him—Christ alone. Join hearts under His headship and enjoy the fountain of His life that springs up in your ministry.