The Need to be Taught to Pray
I’m about to try something I’ve not done before. For many years I occupied the Chair of Prayer at Southwestern Baptist Seminary and taught a very popular course on prayer each semester. I’ve also used those class notes to teach prayer on Sunday nights or Wednesday nights in churches where I served as Interim Pastor and furthermore, lead numerous prayer seminars in churches over the years. I’ve never used the notes to preach a series on prayer on Sunday mornings. Now I find myself serving as Interim Pastor in a church with no Sunday evening service and located too far away for me to be there on Wednesday evenings. So, I have reworked my class notes into five sermons that will be delivered on the five Sundays of next month. Why do I do this? I assume that if the disciples of Jesus needed to be taught to pray (“Lord, teach is to pray” Luke 11:1), modern disciples need the teaching as well. I did have one student tell me they wanted to take a class from me, but did not need the class on prayer, since they considered themselves a genuine prayer warrior, possessing the spiritual gift of intercession. I asked them if they had ever prayed till their sweat turned to drops of blood? The response was just a blank stare. I followed with, “That’s the way Jesus prayed (Luke 22:44) and I doubt if you have perfected your prayer life until you pray like Jesus.” The student signed up for the class and later wrote me a note, expressing thanks. I’ve often wondered if that student ever prayed till sweat turned to blood. So, how’s your prayer life?