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Discussing the proper way to pray

In the Speaker’s Quote Book, author Roy B. Zuck included a poem about a group of men discussing the proper way to pray.

“The proper way for men to pray,” said Deacon Lemuel Keys,

“And the only proper attitude is down upon his knees.”

“No, I should say the way to pray,” said Reverend Dr. Wise,

“Is standing upright with outstretched arms and rapt and upturned eyes.”

“Oh, no, no, no,” said Elmer Slow, “such posture is too proud.

A man should pray with eyes fast closed and head contritely bowed.”

“It seems to me his hand should be austerely clasped in front,

With both thumbs pointing toward the ground,” said the Rev. Dr. Blunt.

“Last year I fell in Hitchkin’s well headfirst,” said Cyrus Brown.

“Both my heels were sticking up and my head was pointing down.”

“And I made a prayer right then and there, the best prayer I ever said.”

The prayingest prayer I ever prayed was a standing on my head!”

This delightful poem reminds us there are many different ways to pray but, it doesn’t matter how we do it, the main point is: just do it!

Jesus had 12 disciples. They ate with Him, lived with Him, and ministered by His side. They also had the opportunity to ask Him for anything and He would grant it. One day while watching Jesus, they saw something that caught their attention. Luke 11:1 tells us what it was, “One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said to him, ‘Lord, teach us to pray.’” (NIV)

What was it about the way Jesus prayed that caught the disciples’ attention?  I believe they heard the confidence in His voice from knowing that His Father would give Him whatever He asked. I also believe that far too many times we underestimate the power of prayer.

There was once a monarch who hired some people to make tapestries and garments for him. Among the workers was a young child who was selected because he was especially skilled at weaving.

The king gave the silk and the patterns to the employees with the strict instructions to seek his aid immediately if any difficulties arose.

The boy, working by himself, made quiet and steady progress while the others were distressed by their many failures.

One day they gathered around the youngster and inquired, “Why are you so happy and successful while we are always having trouble?”

“Don’t you remember the words of the king?” asked the lad. “He told us to send for him whenever it was necessary.”

“Yes, but he’s very busy, and we thought you were wrong in disturbing him so frequently.”

“Well,” replied the little weaver, “I just took him at his word, and he was always happy to help me!”

We can learn a lesson from that little boy — Don’t ever be ashamed to ask God for help, He is always ready to listen when we call His name.

Rev. Doug Johnson is the senior pastor at Raven Assembly of God in Raven, Virginia