One of my mentors at different seasons of my life is someone who is no longer living. He is one of first great Theologians. I have been encouraged by his discoveries about prayer that I will pass on to you.
The most important discovery this mentor of mine wrestled with and helped others see the importance of this; how the heart, mind and soul is so disorderly. As we seek to walk with Jesus, we know that we should love God with all of who we are. But, do we? Jesus challenged the church in Ephesus, "You have abandoned your first love." (Rev 2:4) I will let this mentor ask you, is your heart truly and fully in love with God the Father, God and Son and God the Holy Spirit? Or do you love power, prominence, profit or something else?
The next discovery about prayer that this mentor passed on is to truly pray for what makes you happy. What? To discover this, you must pray. When you are conversing with God, He will show you how fleeting and temporary comforts, rewards, pleasures and successes truly are. The more you press into the conversation with God, the more you discover Ps 27:4 "One thing I ask from the LORD, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the LORD and to seek him in his temple."
Next, this mentor discovered the life-giving experience of The Lord's Prayer. How it starts off with genuine worship of our Heavenly Father. Then moves to realign our disorderly lives around God's Kingdom and God's will not our own. Then it moves to petition, confession, thanksgiving and world changing. This mentor would say, "Think long and hard about this great model of prayer." I add, "Then dive in and pray it."
Another discovery according to this mentor is the bewildering prayers during the dark seasons of life. He would prepare others by saying, "Even the most godly Christian does not even know how to pray in regards to our tribulations." Do we pray for God to remove them? Do we pray for strength to get through them? This experience of prayer reminds us of Jesus' ultimate prayer in the garden, "Father, take this cup from me. But, not my will but thine will be done."
Who is this mentor? St Augustine.
How is your conversation with God going? How is God re-ordering your life? Are your prayers aligned with His prayers? Are your goals aligned with His goals? Is your daily agenda aligned with His?
Seeking to discover these things like Augustine together,