The older I get, the more certain I am our prayer should always include praise. Let us start with that intention; to offer praise and honor to God.
Is God some ego maniacal being who needs us to stroke some eternal vanity? Let us look at our prayer life as one of praise because our praise more clearly shows we know the glorious Person of God and our own place as God’s creation.
Here is another way to think of our praise, beloved. Our praise to God is the key to open the door to God’s presence. That is to say, it works.
And, today, We have to involve ourselves in the kind of prayer called intercession. Intercessory prayer is a necessary act for people who trust God as to be God.
There are a lot of ways to describe and explain intercessory prayer, but let me off this explanation today and come back to more description of intercessory prayer later.
Two things, here is the first. People who wonder if we should have to pray for God to intercede in the lives of needy persons are probably the same people who wonder if we should have to offer praise to God. So, let me say, our prayer should go to God in praise and intercession. Praise opens the door. Intercession opens us to the care of God for us.
And, then, intercession opens up our heart to God. Let me explain this way.
A pastor once sat with a friend who was not particularly religious. The friend did not attend worship anywhere. He did not read a Bible. He did not care about religion.
During their conversation the pastor’s phone rang repeatedly. One call was from the funeral home asking the pastor to a memorial service. A call came from someone needing a visit in the hospital for her husband. Another call requested counseling for a shaken marriage.
After awhile, the irreligious friend shook his head. He looked at the floor.
“I never knew,” he said. “So many people invite you into their tragedies.”
With our intercession for the sick, the forlorn and the needy, we invite God into human tragedy. Who else would you ask?