As Christians, we know that God loves it when we pray individually. However, He also encourages us to pray together as prayer by yourself can sometimes miss an element of depth. Praying by yourself is still good, but it is even more special when it’s shared with others. I certainly don’t want to discourage individual prayer. However, it benefits not only you but also others when you pray together.
Jesus Asks Us to Pray
Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane, when suffering the worst time of his life, took the disciples with him and encouraged them to pray:
“Keep alert and pray that you’ll be spared from this time of testing. For your spirit is eager enough, but your humanity is feeble.”– Mark 14:38
Jesus felt a need for them to join Him in prayer as He knew that there is something encouraging, uplifting and affirming when we pray together. Faith grows when we pray together. We all know the word ‘amen’. It’s a phrase which means “I agree”, “Make it so”. How can you get an ‘amen’ when you’re praying by yourself? When you get together with others and pray, there’s a spiritual intimacy that happens, a connection that is built.
What is a Healthy Prayer Life?
Healthy prayer life is a benchmark of a Christian life. What does this look like? It’s talking with God privately and looking for opportunities to pray with others. It’s like having a deep friendship with someone: you have moments where you can talk with that person and have a continued flow of conversation, but there may be times of silence, calm moments of connection.
Recover your Prayer Life
However, when a relationship is not good, distance is created by infrequent conversation. This may be because we’re feeling flat emotionally and feel that we have nothing to offer. This can make it very hard or even impossible to pray. I completely understand what that’s like because in the early stages of burnout, I found I couldn’t engage in prayer like I could previously. I had to rest and repair before I started to hear God’s voice once more and finally found myself talking with Him again.
Sometimes, it’s not just the relationship that’s not good, it’s us personally. There’s always a need to rest, restore and become stronger. If you’re feeling empty, reach out. Talking to someone can help you to understand that the situation can get better. Whether it’s someone you’ve trusted who hurt you, or what you expected to happen hasn’t happened yet, or you deliberately turned your back on God and have done something you know you shouldn’t have. You can come back from any of these places. If it’s the relationship that’s suffering, then who can help you fix it? Relationships can be restored, that includes your relationship with God. He wants a close connection with you, always.
- What would help you engage in a richer prayer life?
- What would help you to want to pray more with others?
- Is something preventing you from talking more with Jesus?
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