For the past few days, during my early morning prayers, God has continued to talk to me about the need for His children to devote themselves to prayers. Paul tells us in Colossians 4:2, to “Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful." This is God’s instruction, and I want to encourage you in this post to take it seriously. I will show you what it means to be devoted to prayer, as well as give you 5 powerful benefits of this spiritual discipline.
Some days ago, I asked my children what it means to devote oneself to prayer. This was during our daily morning family devotions. I was amazed at their insight.
The first said, “Make it a part of you. Continue in it.”
The next said, “Make out time for it.”
The next said, “Make it a habit.”
Our youngest said, “Try to succeed in it.”
I could never have gotten better answers. Their answers go to the heart of the meaning of what it means to be devoted to prayer: Make prayer a part of you. Continue in prayer. Make out time for prayer. Make prayer a habit. Try to succeed in prayer. Make prayer a key focus of your life. Prioritize it. Plan around it. Commit to it with your entire being and resources.
A Perfect Example
Jesus is our perfect example in this matter. His personal prayer life has continued to inspire me to devote myself more to prayer. Look at it here:
"Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed." ~ Mark 1:35
Notice the following from His example:
1. Very early in the morning.
It was the first thing He did. He spoke with God before He spoke to men. He met with God before he met with men. Unfortunately, a lot of Christians check their emails, Facebook, or sms every morning before they even talk to God! No wonder there is such weakness, compromise, and powerlessness in the church today against the forces of the enemy. It is time to put God first. Each morning, as Jesus Christ set the example for us, talk to God first.
2. He shed off sleep.
In order to speak with His Father, Jesus had to get up. He shed off sleep.
A major reason many Christians do not pray in the morning hours is the love of sleep. This is a major challenge. You can’t be devoted to sleep and to prayer at the same time. You can’t be a lover of sleep and be devoted to prayer at the same time.
If only you knew what too much sleeping has cost you…
"But while everyone was sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and went away." ~Matthew 13:25
A lot of the vices and evil that has crept into our society, that have even rampaged Christian homes and communities – teen pregnancies, violence, perversion, addictions – have happened while everyone was sleeping. While the saints slept, the enemy crept in and sowed all kinds of weeds.
Learn to get up as Jesus did, early in the morning to pray. If you do, it will be impossible for Satan to penetrate your life.
He that watches over us does not sleep. That’s comforting. But there’s another component of the entire picture: We are His co-workers. Watching is work, but, we are to work with Him. So He says, watch and pray. Stop sleeping too much. Get up daily, early in the morning, and pray.
3. He moved away from every possibilities of distraction.
Jesus left the house, went off to a solitary place and prayed. He moved away from all possibilities of distractions. Devotion requires focus. You can’t be focused on men and on God at the same time. There is so much distractions in this world. You must regularly move away from men if you want to devote yourself to prayer, and strengthen your relationship with God. Set apart the first hours of your day – and several other periods – during which time you put off your phone, shut the rest of this world out, and commune with your Heavenly Father.
Now, pray: "Teach me your ways, Oh Lord. Show me how you do things, and why you do them."
Now, let me show you 5 powerful blessings of walking in the footsteps of Jesus Christ in your prayer life:
5 Powerful Blessings
The following blessings that would rarely be available to you otherwise:
#1. Strength to your heart
Early morning intimacy with God feeds and strengthens your divine nature. This makes you victorious in the constant conflict with your earthly nature. If you want to be victorious over the temptations of the flesh and this corrupt world, you will need tremendous inner spiritual strength. This can only come when your spirit feeds on God’s own Spirit. Then you draw divine strength to walk in holiness, purity, and righteousness.
Also, life is filled with so much stress and challenges. Most days, you can barely cope as you are tired, wearied and often sad. However, when you devote yourself to prayer, you draw daily spiritual strength to soar above stress and multiply your productivity.
#2. Clarity to your mind
If your mind is muddled up with broken, scattered, incoherent thoughts, your life will lack any meaningful progress. This is why many find it extremely difficult to move forward. But, when you spend the first hours of your morning in fellowship and worship and bible reading and prayer, the oil of God flows through your mind. The spirit of God cleanses it of unclean toxic and poisonous thoughts. Then the presence of God causes your mind to become clear, and makes your thoughts line up with God’s thinking.
The result is that your thoughts and efforts become more focused. Then you begin to leap forward in every area of your life.
#3. Insight into God’s word
The Bible is the greatest book on earth. No other book contains as much mysteries and success principles as the bible. Unfortunately, many Christians find it boring. The problem is not with the book, it’s with the carnal mind of the reader. When your eyes open, you will discover this to be the greatest book on earth. You will find awesome spiritual principles that will make your life a wonder on the earth. David prayed that God would open his eyes to behold wonderful things there. People who spend quality time in prayer experience greater depth in their knowledge of God’s will and God’s ways.
When you can see your end, you will live life with greater focus, purposefulness, and strength. A lot of people just live from one second to the other, flailing hopelessly around as they react to what life throws at them. They are unable to see beyond the bill on the table. They just survive from one crisis to the other without any meaning to their lives.
However, when you spend time I prayer, like Jesus Christ, you gain foresight, and a clear vision of your immediate future. This will enable you to see the point in whatever is happening daily to you. It will empower your steps, and focus your efforts in more meaningful ways.
Many people are handkerchiefs in the pocket of the devil! They don’t even have any idea how much the devil has possessed and ruined their lives and relationships. If only some people knew what God has in store for them, they would stop rejoicing over mere crumbs and weep for their losses.
Jesus Christ has given us dominion over principalities and powers. He is the head over all principalities and powers. And we have been given fullness in Him. As I would normally say, “I am full of the One who is the head over all principalities and powers. So, I am unstoppable.” It’s as simple as that. But, it is only when you are a prayerful person that you can begin to realize the awesome power of God deposited within you.
Therefore, I encourage you today to get up daily each morning, get alone with God, and spend some good quality time in prayer.
God bless you.
It gives you dominion over spiritual forces within your environment.