Are You an “If” Pray-er or a “When” Pray-er?

12 Jan

I heard recently a good insight from the Sermon on the Mount. Jesus, in speaking about prayer in the Sermon, continually uses the word “when” in reference to prayer. He warns against self-exaltation in prayer but He assumes we will pray. “When you pray, do not be like the hypocrites . . .” Jesus assumes His people will pray. And most Christians assume Christians will pray. But it seems to me that often we substitute the word “if” for the word “when.” “If I have time, I will pray.” “If I feel like it, I will pray.” “If times are tough, I will pray.” Instead, the pattern of our lives ought to be “when you pray.” Prayer should be as ordinary a part of the pattern of our lives as all the other habits of life. This is convicting to me, because God promises great blessing through prayer but I am far to often an “if” Christian instead of a “when” Christian. Would our consistency and joy in prayer increase if we substituted the word “when” for the word “if”?

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