What Prayer Shows Us

Charles Spurgeonby Charles Spurgeon

“In my distress I called to the Lord; I cried to my God for help!” Psalm 18:6

“Hear my prayer, O Lord, listen to my cry for help!” Psalm 39:12

The act of prayer teaches us our unworthiness, which is a very beneficial lesson for such proud beings as we are. If God gave us favors without constraining us to pray for them, we would never know how poor we are. But a true prayer is . . . an inventory of our needs, a catalogue of our necessities, a revealing of our hidden poverty. Prayer is both an application to divine wealth, and a confession of personal inadequacy.

The most healthy state of a Christian is to be always . . . empty in self, and constantly depending upon the Lord for supplies; poor in self, and rich in Jesus; weak as water personally, but mighty through God to do great exploits. Hence prayer, while it adores God, it lays the creature where he should be–in the very dust!

Prayer in itself, apart from the answer which it brings, is a great benefit to the Christian. As the runner gains strength for the race by daily exercise, so for the great race of life we acquire energy by the hallowed labor of prayer.

Prayer plumes the wings of God’s young eaglets–that they may learn to mount above the clouds. Prayer sends God’s warriors forth to combat–with their sinews braced and their muscles firm. Prayer . . . girds human weakness with divine strength, turns human folly into heavenly wisdom, and gives the peace of God to troubled believers.

We have no idea what prayer can do! We thank you great God, for the throne of grace, a choice proof of your marvelous loving-kindness. Help us to use it aright throughout this day!

“Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.” Colossians 4:2

“Let us therefore approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” Hebrews 4:16

by Charles Spurgeon