And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and hers. Genesis 3:15a
It was St. Paul who helpfully pointed out that we each struggle to do what we positively intend to do: ‘For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do – this I keep on doing’. There’s a civil war waging within us!
This all relates back to the ground rules God established once Adam and Eve had reasoned their way out of God’s provision. Having pursued Satan’s logic, as opposed to God’s wisdom, two clear options emerged as a consequence. Simply put: walking with God or away from God.
Here’s where prayer helps. It expresses my commitment to pursue God. However, as a result of the enmity between God and Satan I often find it difficult to pray. How many times have I been distracted from actually praying when I meant to?
If we find the act of turning to prayer a challenge then we can be assured that we are following God. God’s enemy deliberately seeks to sabotage our plans. In fact it’s a life principle. Pursuing God will always mean I have to push back against ‘good’ reasons as to why NOW is not a good time to pray.
This enemy is like a virus and afflicts all of humanity. Therefore, prayer is in fact central to dealing with this human malady. It strengthens my resistance and prevents me becoming victim to the enemy’s ceaseless demands. For if every moment is devoted to a distraction then my focus is never directed towards God. Satan has me imprisoned.
The history of the Church is one long account of the continuous prayer of God’s people. A work that Waverley Abbey has embraced from its birth. If we are to celebrate the grace of God in every sphere of life, then we must invest our time and energy into prayer. This is the work of resistance that brings God’s Kingdom on earth.
Something to Consider: What sabotages your commitment to prayer?
An Action to Take: Set a time each day, say ten minutes, when you will pray.
A Prayer to Make: ‘Lord, help me as I choose to resist the devil, yield to you and pray.’
Micha Jazz is Director of Resources at Waverley Abbey, UK.
Photo by Luis Quintero on Unsplash
Used with Permission