Author: Joe Ramos, English Pastor, East Bay Chinese Christian Revival Church, Castro Valley
40 Then he returned to his disciples and found them sleeping. “Could you men not keep watch with me for one hour?” he asked Peter. 41 “Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak.”(Matthew 26:40-41, NIV)
Why is it most of us ignore prayer? We wonder why God does not hear our prayers, our requests or petitions. We ask, why we are going through so much turmoil? In the place called Gethsemane, Jesus asked His disciples, “Stay awake and pray, so that you won’t enter into temptation, the Spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak” (Matthew 26:41).
We cannot build a church without prayer.” Unless the Lord builds a house, its builders labor over it in vain” (Psalm 127:1). We cannot fight the adversary without prayer. “For our battle is not against flesh and blood, but against spiritual forces of evil (Ephesians 6:12). We cannot give others Jesus, unless we first have him in us, and that is not until we are bathed in prayer. “Whatever you ask in My name, I will do it so that the Father may be glorified in the Son” (John 14:13). Yet many of us do not understand that to come into communication with God is to develop a prayer life, a relationship with Him. But what do I say? It is an open conversation with God, with our maker, first in praise then in worship. Jesus had a hard time getting his disciples to stay with Him and pray but after the movement of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost things changed. We need to make some New Year’s resolutions and put God first in our life and seek him in prayer. “Seek first the kingdom of God” (Matthew 6:33). We have to ask God for direction in our life and for strength to be used for His will, not our will. Jesus knew that He would be crucified, betrayed by one of His own followers yet He knew he was the ransom for our sins, the sacrificial lamb, “the way, the truth and the life” (John 14:6). He did not want to take the cup but after much prayer and seeking His Father’s face He was only able to do it after much prayer. The answer in all this is prayer. Do you “Got Prayer?”
The ISAAC 2009 Lenten Devotional, edited by Rev. Dr. Johnson Chiu. This devotional was written by Asian American English ministry leaders and pastors in the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond. To purchase, click here: Road of Suffering, Road to Glory: A Lenten Adventure with the Savior