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What Keeps Us From Praying Together

Encouraging Prayer / James Banks
The Truth Network Radio
March 4, 2023 12:00 pm

What Keeps Us From Praying Together

Encouraging Prayer / James Banks

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March 4, 2023 12:00 pm

In this episode James and Robby discuss the important in praying together and overcoming that fear. 

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Share it. But most of all, thank you for listening to the Truth Podcast Network. I love to pray. And now, here's James. Well, I loved last week's episode on the reasons we don't pray.

I really thought it was one of the best we've ever done. And James, you want to build on that this week, which is exciting to me, and talk about the reasons why we don't pray together. That's right, Robbie. I've said for a long time that you can't guilt people into praying together, and I believe that. But I've also been thinking about Paul's advice to Timothy in 2 Timothy 4 to correct, rebuke, and encourage with great patience and careful instruction. And the truth is, there needs to be some correction in the church today on this whole subject of praying together. Because frankly, it seems sometimes like we will do anything else rather than get together to pray. That's scary, but you're so right. And we have to ask ourselves why. I mean, when Jesus told it, I mean, he told the disciples to model it, and yet it almost as if we feel like we've come up with a better way of doing church.

Yeah, that's exactly right. You've got all these things going on, but try to call a prayer meeting, and you know, how many people do you have there? And look at the culture around us, and you've got to wonder why we've lost our impact. And I think the reason is we're moving in our strength and not God's, and that's happening. Because as we mentioned in Paul Miller's words last week, we killed the prayer meeting.

Darrell Bock Oh, man, have we. So, let's go there. I mean, how do we get back to where we need to be?

Get back, get back. Where we once belonged, I think, is the way that Paul put that. Yeah, different Paul.

Dr. Gerry Breshears That's right, that's right. The other Paul, I think the first thing is we have to realize that if God told us to do this in his word, and he clearly did, then we have to repent of not doing it and realize that if we follow him in this, God has great things in store. We also have to take a clear eye to realize that we don't see the things that we need to. Here's a great quote about that from Ben Patterson's book, Deepening Your Conversation with God.

Just listen to this. He says, for many of us on an almost subconscious level, there is a lack of confidence that something like prayer can actually get anything done. Therefore, since our lives are full of things that need to be done, prayer naturally gets pushed out to the edges of the day. Believing there is not time to pray is a self-fulfilling prophecy. As PT Forsythe warned, the inability to pray is the punishment for the refusal to pray. God said it would be that way. In repentance and rest is your salvation. In quietness and trust is your strength.

But you would have none of it. You said, no, we will flee on horses. Therefore, you will flee.

That's what he tells his people in Isaiah 30, 15, and 16. And then Patterson finishes with this thought, flight is a good image of the kind of activity that dominates prayerless people and churches. Oh, man, that's strong. But it makes a lot of sense. I mean, the less we pray, the harder it seems to pray.

That's right. We can become so self-focused, so wrapped up in our own lives. And even if we're thinking it's about Jesus and us, we're still missing an important point.

We're meant to be part of something together, something greater. So here's another quote about that from a man who would know who pastored the largest church in the world at the time, but also felt that it was only God's power in answer to prayer that kept it going. So listen to what Charles Spurgeon felt about the importance of praying for others, what we sometimes call intercessory prayer. And he really takes the gloves off with this quote.

So here it is. I commend intercessory prayer because it opens man's soul, gives a healthy play to his sympathies, constrains him to feel that he is not everybody, and that this wide world and this great universe were not, after all, made that he might be its petty lord, that everything might bend to his will and all creatures crouched at his feet. It does him good, I say, to make him know that the cross was not uplifted alone for him, for its far-reaching arms were meant to drop with blessings upon millions of the human race. Thou lean and hungry worshiper of self, this is an exercise which would make another man of thee a man more like the son of man and less like Nabal the Charles. Wow.

Oh, ouch. But that's so true. I mean, Nabal was the guy in the Bible who refused to help David in a time of real need, and he could have done it easily, but he was too selfish.

That's exactly right. And we have to realize, again, it's not just about us. It's about others, and we can bless them and help them as we pray. So here's another quote from Spurgeon about our need to give our time to God and to each other in this. Again, these are long quotes, but they're so worthwhile, so here it is. Could be well made up to you by your gains on other days, or if not so, would not the spiritual prophet much more than counterbalance any little temporal loss? In other words, Spurgeon is saying, give God the time and he will take care of you, and we need you to be there. And think about it. If we give that time, God will make it up to us.

Oh, wow, that's an incredible point, and it all comes back to the same theme of feeling we're too busy. You know, but if we trust God and take the time to pray together, you know, He's going to bless that. So, James, I think I should put in a shameless plug for your book, Praying Together, here, because in that you cover not only the importance of doing the thing, but also you go over the biblical case for it, and also how to do it in a way that will encourage us to keep going and not give up. Thank you, Robbie.

Yeah, that's right. And you can find that at my website at or on Amazon or But Robbie, most of all, let's not miss this moment to pray. You, me and our listeners, that God will help us hunger to pray together so that we can see what only He can do and have those blessings He has waiting for us. Would you pray for us about that?

Oh, so gladly. Lord, thank you that we know, I mean, we know that your house is to be a house of prayer, and apart from you, we can do nothing. And so, Lord, I pray that you would help us get back to where we once belonged. Help us to get back in the prayer meetings, back to praying with one another, and back to seeing this isn't about us. Back to seeing you bless others in your strength and in your power as we ask and intercede for others, but also as we come together and worship for you, Lord. Your house is in so many different ways where we should live in our hearts with you in unity. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen. You can hear more from Pastor James by visiting his website,, or by visiting Peace Church in Durham, North Carolina. May God bless you and encourage you as you pray.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-04 14:13:20 / 2023-03-04 14:17:03 / 4

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