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May 30, 2008

the prayer / humility connection

prayer: what a way to get our eyes off ourselves and onto our Lord and others! some of my recurring sins are selfishness/pride and lack of prayer. these go hand-in-hand. years ago i told someone that i am consistently too self-centered/always want to talk about myself. his solution was so simple, but so Biblical: he suggested that i ask the people around me how i could pray for them and then be faithful in praying for their concerns. this would direct my focus first to the Lord and then to others.

my pride is evidenced in the fact that i think that i can do just fine without prayer. it takes humility to say that "without Him i can do nothing" or to recognize that fifteen minutes of prayer could do far more good than fifteen minutes of all my other best efforts. i give my Lord some on-the-go prayer, but i believe He wants those still, quiet prayers, too. but alone-in-my-closet prayers don't seem to make a dent in the pile of papers on my desk, so prayer is left for those last few incoherent moments before i fall asleep. alone-in-my-closet prayers take time, time that could be spent...looking busy and spiritual in the eyes of all the church people. it is difficult for me to even get up five minutes earlier to pray. and somehow, the days slip by with unconfessed sins, and praise and problems not brought to my Maker.

did you know that James, the New Testament author, prayed so much that he was known as "camel knees"? James knew humility too, to recognize that his earthly brother, Jesus, was Lord of all. if you know a who saint is faithful in prayer, they likely also know humility.

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