(This was written last year.)
Prayer. We can certainly miss the whole point of it, can’t we? This is what E.M. Bounds makes a point of today.
E.M. Bound’s book, On Prayer, is considered a classic. The book I am reading is a compilation of his earlier works first published in 1912. He was born in 1935 and was originally a lawyer. He left law and became a Methodist pastor. I will post from his books often and then add my remarks.
He is a tough read and really challenges me as I’m sure he will you. He pulls no punches.
From E.M.Bounds on Prayer
The character of our lives
"The character of the inner life is a condition of effectual praying. As is the life, so will the praying be. An inconsistent life obstructs praying and neutralizes what little praying we may do. It must be fortified by a life aiming, unceasingly, to obey God. Prayer which does not result in right thinking and right living is a farce. We miss the whole point of prayer if it fails to purge character and change conduct.
The point of prayer
Praying must come out of a cleansed heart. The fruit of real praying is right living.
Hard words, huh?
Why do we pray if we don’t expect to see a change in our lives? Do we just pray, without it occurring to us, that we are to be changed in the process? And I agree with Bounds, and God says it as well, that the more we lead a righteous life and think right thoughts, our prayer life just naturally gets stronger. So it’s kind of like a circle of righteousness.
If we continually engage in known sin, God might hear our prayers but will He answer them? God Himself states that He doesn’t respond to all prayers.
Righteous prayer leads to righteous living and righteous living leads back to righteous praying. That’s a word, righteousness, we don’t use often these days. Maybe we should.
Maybe we should take stock of our lives. Are there some recent positive changes we can point to? Are we growing in at least one area of our lives? Or are we stagnant?
Self-monitoring our prayer life.
I’m a big believer in monitoring my life.
The self-examined life is important. How else will we know if we are improving in some areas if we don’t run a self-check now and then? How will we see the changes that are triggered by our prayer life?
For me, I’m going to use my Bullet Journal for this.
(Since I wrote this post, I now track my prayer and Bible study time in my Bullet Journal. I am going to start a prayer journal as well, probably a different notebook though.)
Once I figure it out, I will certainly post about it.
The page, “A hard but important truth about prayer” appeared first on faitthsighanddiy.com