Growing in Prayer

by Susan Sampson

My husband and I dated long distance before we were married.  I lived in Houston and he lived here.  That was before cell phones and texting.  I was thinking about how long we used to talk on the phone together.  It was hours, many times til the wee hours of the night.  Huge phone bills!  I loved talking to him and feeling that closeness.  Oh how I long to have that kind of love and devotion for my Lord!

But I confess to you all that the thought of praying to the Lord for hours, any time of day, causes my flesh to resist.  I want to be a prayer warrior.  Yet, the flesh resists.  And our flesh will always resist (Rom. 8:7).  Of course our Father knows this about us, which is one reason I’m sure He instructs us in Colossians 3:5 to “put to death therefore what is earthly in you…”

I’m so so thankful for the visual image of the garden!  Oh how I want to grow!Our Father is the vinedresser.  “I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser” (John 15:1).  Jesus says, “I am the vine; you are the branches.  Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15:5).  One of my favorite flowers is wisteria, which is such a beautiful vine.  Such a gift of beauty from the Lord.  A beautiful picture of who we are in His eyes in Christ.

Heavenly Father, we desperately need your grace!  Please give us the desire to pray, the grace to persevere in prayer when the enemy and our flesh goes to battle against the Spirit in us.  When it feels as awkward or even as frightening as riding our bikes for the first time, help us not to give up.  Teach us how to pray.  Help us to clear the land.  Show us your great love for us in Christ.  May we continue to grow by grace into beautiful blossoms in your garden this side of heaven!

“Oh come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker!  For he is our God, and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand” (Psa. 95:6-7).

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