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Praying as a New Man - From Idolatry to Worship

The main point of this teaching is that we must pray and pray rightly. We are privileged to pray. Prayer is analogous to breathing in humans. We must breath to live and our attitude should be the same towards prayer. Prayer is the way by which we communicate our desires, needs, and attitude of thankfulness toward our heavenly Father. It is our spiritual act of breathing.

Many people shun the idea of prayer and intimacy with the Lord, but that must not be the case. Often we pray without even being conscious of the act. Whether it is worrying, fretting, or complaining, these in essence are forms of prayer to ourselves, which is a form of idolatry. Our worrying and complaining is prayer directed in the opposite direction of where we should focus our attention. We must change our attitude with the purposeful intention of collecting our thoughts and speech and directing them outward towards the Lord in prayer instead of inward towards our own self.

Seeing our prayer life as replacing all the complaints, worries, and frets that one might normally indulge, is a repeated exhortation from Paul, James, Jude, and Peter. The command is frequent that we should put off the old man and put on the new man. Within the new man there is no allowance for the inward focus of these indulgent acts. Rather, the new man must develop the outward action of turning his inward thoughts and feelings towards the Lord in prayer. Just like bad speech needs to be replaced with good speech, bad prayers need to be replaced with good prayers.

Regarding the practicality of the act of prayer, some people walk when they pray, others kneel, while others choose to sit down. Some exercise prayer in their cars, on lunch breaks, while doing dishes, going on walks, or in a closet. Whichever method is chosen, prayer needs to be intentional and consistent, and we must begin. We must set the intention to simply do it.

The next time you find yourself worrying, fretting, or complaining; in essence making an idol of your own self, ignore not the conviction the Lord’s spirit has brought but rather turn your heart away from your own self and to the Lord in prayer. It is our privilege as sons and daughters to turn to Christ in prayer in all things. Through the humble act of prayer may you find him to be your provision in all things and at all times regardless of the circumstance.

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