We’re exhorted to be devoted to prayer (Col. 4:2), to pray on all occasions (Eph. 6:18), continually (1 Thess. 5:17), and to not give up (Lk. 18:1). Sometimes, however, we might struggle to remain consistent, wholehearted, and alert in prayer. As we already considered, we have good reasons to pray so it would seem reasons we don’t pray might be more symptomatic of something deeper.
Getting Below the Surface of Reasons We Don’t Pray
We might claim to be ignorant about what to pray and how to pray. Yet, God never made prayer complicated.
Trust in him at all times, you people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge. (Ps. 62:8)
- If this is your reason, read: Prayerlessness Due to Ignorance?
We might think we’re too busy, too tired, and hence too distracted to pray and get anything out of it. Yet, these the times we most need His help.
Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. (Heb. 4:16)
… those who hope in (wait on) the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. (Isa. 40:31)
The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. (James 5:16b)
- If this is your reason, read: Prayerlessness Due to a Lack of Benefits?
Perhaps we’re angry or disappointed with God because of what He allowed into our lives even though we prayed. Yet, we humans don’t know better than a God who is holy and righteous, all-wise and sovereign, as well as gracious and loving.
As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. (Isa. 55:9)
- If this is your reason, read: Prayerlessness Because of What We Overestimate?
Maybe we tried and tried and just couldn’t make ourselves pray consistently so gave up because it’s too hard. Yet, God never said it would be easy nor intended for us to “do” the Christian life through self-determination and self-striving.
Cease striving and know that I am God. (Ps. 46:10, NASB)
And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. (Eph. 6:18)
- If this is your reason, read: Prayerlessness Because of What We Underestimate?