And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes to heaven, but smote on his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. 14I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalts himself shall be abased; and he that humbles himself shall be exalted.
– Luke 18:13-14
Thoughts on Today’s Verse…
Prayer is a means by which Christians commune with God. Only if we pray to God with heart and with honesty can we gain His guidance and establish a normal relationship with Him.
From the prayer of this tax collector we can see that, though he only prayed with one sentence, he was called righteous by God because he prayed from his heart. In fact, prayer doesn’t depend on how long we pray or how beautiful our words are, but depends on whether we can pray honestly. Praying with insincerity is unacceptable to God. I remembered God’s words, “Whilst praying, your heart must be at peace before God, and it must be sincere. You are truly communing and praying with God; you must not deceive God using nice-sounding words. Prayer is centered around that which God wishes to complete today. Ask God to bring you greater enlightenment and illumination, and bring your actual state and troubles before God to pray, and make resolution before God. Prayer is not the following of procedure, but the seeking of God using your true heart. Ask that God protect your heart, making it able to often be at peace before God, making you able to know yourself, and despise yourself, and forsake yourself in the environment that God has set for you, thus allowing you to have a normal relationship with God and making you someone who truly loves God.”
God’s words tell us how to pray. We should first be quiet before God and tell Him what is in our true hearts rather than deceive Him with nice-sounding words, falsehoods or empty words. Prayer is centered around the things we meet or actual difficulties in our lives. Prayer is not the following of procedure, but the seeking of the truth and the ways of practice using our true hearts. Thus, we can gain the Holy Spirit’s work and have a deeper understanding of ourselves, and better understand God’s intention in saving man. If we practice and enter according to God’s requirements, God will guide us to go forward every step of the way.
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