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Praying & Running

I was at a sports banquet tonight with one of my sons and the cross country coach gave a good challenge to his team. He told them the only way to improve in running was to run and to run often. He said, “There’s no magic trick to improving your running. You just have to run.”

It hit me, that the same is true for prayer. The Bible is clear on the importance of prayer in the life of a believer, and pastors are called to “devote” themselves to “prayer and the ministry of the word” (Acts 6:4). Yet, most of us struggle with prayer. Wherever there is a struggle- from weight loss to dating to prayer- there will be plenty of people offering a quick, easy solution (typically for a price!). But, there are rarely easy answers. Work is required and we’re just looking for lazy shortcuts. Similarly, in prayer the only way to learn to pray is to pray. You can use some instruction (particularly follow biblical prayers like the Psalms and our Lord’s model prayer), but then you must simply pray and pray often. As the Puritans said, pray until you pray.

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