“Then Moses said to them, “This is what the Lord has commanded you to do, so that that the glory of the Lord may appear to you.” Leviticus 9:6
Holy God, it amazes me that you, in your infinite and powerful ways wants to talk to me. That the God of the universe wants me to come to you each and every day with my needs and my fears. Today I come to you with praise and thanksgiving that you love me so much. Amen
I heard a description of an early “church service” the other day. The first half was open to anyone and featured scripture reading and the teaching of the gospel. Then the pastor would call out, “the doors, the doors” and it was the message to those who were not baptized or confessed believers to leave. The doors would then be closed and the second half of the service commenced. This is when the holy gift of communicating with God began. The church membership would have an “upper room” type meeting with breaking of bread and prayer to the Most Holy One.
What I like about this is that shows reverence to the second greatest blessing God bestowed on us (the first being Jesus’ sacrifice for our sins) – a loving, two-way path communicating with God. A gift given to believers by Jesus and spurred on by the Holy Spirit that lives in the children of God. I’m not suggesting only believers should pray, it’s just an acknowledgement of the seriousness of this gift we’ve been given.
In the Bible verse today, we see the seeds of God’s desire to communicate with us in the priestly ministry of the ancients. God spoke through Moses on how to address Him through sacrifices and other holy activities. He tells the priests in training that when they take these steps, they will see God’s glory revealed to them. The same is true with the gift of prayer.
“One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.” Luke 11:1
The disciples, just as in Moses’ day, desired to learn how to communicate with God. How to open up the heavens so they could see the glory of the One Almighty. And so Jesus taught them the prayer I mentioned yesterday, what we call “The Lord’s Prayer.” It starts with reverence, placing God in our hearts and minds rightly where He belongs. It moves on to acknowledging God as the provider of all our needs and our submission to Him. We then ask for forgiveness and to forgive others. And finally for daily guidance.
The gift of prayer is God’s message to us that we are not believers of a god who is unable to do all things, or a god who can’t be trusted, or a god to whom we need to beg to hear us. Before we pray we need to be fully informed of how we view Him. If we don’t believe He is merciful then we might believe He will punish us if we bring our sins to Him. Our prayers should always include a request for wisdom about Him so that when He answers our prayer – which He always does – we will understand the answer and see the glory in His ways.
Today, I want to leave you with this beautiful prayer from King David showing us how to glorify and praise God in all His magnificent ways.
1 You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water.
2 I have seen you in the sanctuary and beheld your power and your glory. 3 Because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you. 4 I will praise you as long as I live, and in your name I will lift up my hands. 5 I will be fully satisfied as with the richest of foods; with singing lips my mouth will praise you.
6 On my bed I remember you; I think of you through the watches of the night. 7 Because you are my help, I sing in the shadow of your wings. 8 I cling to you; your right hand upholds me.
9 Those who want to kill me will be destroyed; they will go down to the depths of the earth. 10 They will be given over to the sword and become food for jackals.
11 But the king will rejoice in God; all who swear by God will glory in him, while the mouths of liars will be silenced.