By Greg Laurie
"But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly." —Matthew 6:6
Who is a better example of someone with a strong, active prayer life than Jesus himself? Often in the gospels we read of Him withdrawing from the disciples. They would go to sleep for the night, but He would spend the entire evening with His Father, praying.
That is probably why the disciples came to Him one day and said, "Lord, teach us to pray." In other words, "We have been watching you. We have been examining your life and you obviously know how to pray. Lord, teach us how to pray." Notice they did not come to Him and say, "Lord, teach us a real humdinger to use when we are in big trouble." Instead, they said, "Lord, teach us to pray." That's a good attitude to have. We should always be open to be taught by the Lord.
His response was to teach them what we call the Lord's Prayer, which is brief, covering the basics of prayer. There is a lesson here. The lesson is that Jesus' prayers were short when offered in public. But when He was alone with God, it was a different thing. He could spend the whole night in communion with the Father.
How different that is from so many of us. Our prayers in public are long. Yet our prayers in private are short and sometimes nonexistent. It should be the very opposite of that. When you go before the Lord in prayer, talk to Him with your whole heart, even if it takes all night!
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