Prayer can be influenced by how we understand the God we’re praying to. If we view God as judgmental, we are more likely to pray with fear and trembling and perhaps worry about doing it well. However, if we view God as benevolent and merciful, we may be more willing to lay all our stuff before God, no matter the words or the feelings. If we view God as too mysterious, absent or beyond our influence, we may not bother to pray at all.
Prayer is also influenced by our sense of relationship with God. Prayers born out of deep trust or devotion to God will probably happen more regularly and authentically than prayers of convenience. Some Christians worry if it is okay to express anger with God in our prayers. Yet when we are angry with God, we may pray more honestly than when we pray with disinterest. God can handle it, and it’s better than giving God the silent treatment or praying without integrity.
This message is excerpted from “Am I doing this right?” by Laurie A. Jungling in the July/August 2018 Gather magazine.
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