Prayer Basics

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2. We Must Humble Ourselves

If you want to talk to God expecting the special help and favor that our God's children can become proud and independent. To reach God in prayer we must humble ourselves. The Lord says,

If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land."

(2 Chronicles 7:14)

God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble."

(James 4:6)

We begin to humble ourselves by taking our place as helpless little children in the presence of the Almighty Father. We are creatures made from the dust of the ground. We are helplessly dependent on God for life, breath and all things. Jesus said,

I and the vine, you are the branches ... without Me you can do nothing."

(John 15:5)

There's more. We are not only helpless creatures, but we are also sinful creatures. We must regard ourselves as unworthy of God's least favor. Jesus emphasized this truth when He told the story of two men who went to the temple to pray. One was a Pharisee and the other a sinful tax-collector.

The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, 'God, I thank You that I am not like other men -- extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even this tax-collector. I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I possess.' And the tax-collector, standing afar off, would not so much as raise his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, 'God be merciful to me a sinner'! I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other, for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted."

(Luke 18:10-14)

When we humble oursevles we accept our place under the authority of Christ and that is what Jesus meant when He taught His disciples to pray in His name (John 14:13-15).

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