Why Bother with Prayer?

Posted under The Rectory Bulletin

Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need. (Hebrews 4:16)

Prayer is, I think, one of the least taught aspects of the Christian faith. We see a certain type of prayer modelled for us in a Sunday service, but that is not the totality of prayer. Prayer is more than simply giving God his divine to-do list, and then leaving him to get on with it.

At its base, prayer is consciously being in the presence of God. It is talking to God. It is an awareness that this is a place where God is, and that makes a difference. Some prayer may be wordless - at times words are hard to find - or a pouring out of the heart. It might be silent, spoken or written. Perhaps the written prayers of others might act as a ‘starter’ to begin prayer, or it might be that your own words flow more easily. Some wrestle in prayer at night, others might speak a single line in the midst of the day.

The point is this: there is no single prescription for prayer. It differs from person to person.

It is also the case that prayer gets more straightforward the more we pray. The old saying goes: “how do you get to Carnegie Hall? Practice!”, and that rings true for prayer too. At times it is easier than at other times, but the more you pray the richer it becomes.

So pray! Perhaps make a list of people and situations to pray for. Launch out, or use some familiar prayers to begin. Maybe go through the Lord’s Prayer line by line, dwelling on each petition. The ways are endless, but they all start with a beginning.

So begin!

Why the Bible?

Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. (Psalm 119:105) - In the Scriptures we have a document which spans many centuries, and has stood the test of the passing millennia. The church through the ages has attested to its inspired nature, and is has proved to be the link between us now and the church throughout the ages. Given it is the “Word of the Lord” it has an eternal relevance, and can also serve to challenge our sometimes lazy presuppositions.


When you come, bring the cloak that I left with Carpus at Troas, also the books, and above all the parchments. (1 Timothy 4:13) - So where to start? That is a more difficult question now than it was twenty years ago. By and large Christian bookshops have disappeared, and even a city as large as Bristol has none. Surprisingly, though, there are two near us: one in Newent with a cafe attached, and another in Bromyard. Neither are huge, but they do give an opportunity to flip through some pages before you buy.

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