Matthew 6:5, “And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full.”
Jesus challenged his disciples not to be like the hypocrites who prayed openly and loudly to be admired for their piety. These individuals were not communing with God. They were performing for men. Their prayer time was show time!
But did you catch the opening line of Jesus’ rebuke of hypocritical praying? He does not say “if you pray,” but “when you pray.” Jesus was not attempting to motivate his disciples to pray, but rather to teach them how or in this case how not to pray. It was assumed that anyone who knew and loved God would pray.
Prayer is talking with God. Just you and your Heavenly Father. A simple acrostic PRAY can help you in this conversation. Praise God for who he is and what he has done for you. Repent of any wrongdoing and seek to do what is right. Ask for whatever you need to make this day successful. Finally, choose to yield, that is to submit the totality of your life to God.
If daily prayer is not a normal part of your relationship with God, schedule five minutes at the same time each day this week and use the PRAY acrostic to talk with God.
Heavenly Father, I praise you for ____. I repent of ____. I ask for ____. I yield my life to your control. In Jesus’ name, Amen.