How Should I Pray, Week 5, Day 5
MARK 4:1-8 | Again he began to teach beside the sea. Such a very large crowd gathered around him that he got into a boat on the sea and sat there, while the whole crowd was beside the sea on the land. He began to teach them many things in parables, and in his teaching he said to them: “Listen! A sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path, and the birds came and ate it up. Other seed fell on rocky ground, where it did not have much soil, and it sprang up quickly, since it had no depth of soil. And when the sun rose, it was scorched; and since it had no root, it withered away. Other seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it, and it yielded no grain. Other seed fell into good soil and brought forth grain, growing up and increasing and yielding thirty and sixty and a hundredfold.”
Prayer can occur with eyes open or closed. It can happen while standing, walking, running, sitting, or lying down. Martin Luther prayed on his knees. Sometimes prayer soars in the quiet darkness of a secret chamber where “sense is dumb.” Sometimes, it flows outside amid creation’s wonders, as the sun shines or the clouds cascade across the sky. You can pray out loud, or sing your prayers, or write them in a journal, or you can be silent. But wherever and whenever and however you pray, Jesus wants you to spend time listening.
The word God wants to sow in your heart is not a self-planting seed! A truth we hear in prayer can disappear as quickly as a new thought comes. Insights must take root and become habitual parts of our outlook and regular parts of our practice. Listening to the word means understanding its meaning and significance with your heart and life and not just your mind—otherwise, hard times or cares will come along and thwart the growth God’s instruction can bring.
What prayer postures and settings have you tried?
What messages from God have taken root in your life, shaping your disposition and action?