Let Us Pray: The Essence of Prayer

We begin to wander off the trail when we make prayer transactional rather than relational.  A request/answer prayer life fails to create the God/human conversation which includes requests, but does not define prayer in terms of them.  Our deepest relationships are characterized by the joy of being together, not “what we can get” from the other person.  “Give me”—“Get me” transactions turn manipulative, and eventually collapse under the weight of disappointment.  But when the relationship is genuine,  we can even get a “no” response without thinking the other person has stopped loving us.  And so it is with true prayer.  At its heart, prayer is a relationship between The Lover and the beloved.

About Steve Harper

Retired seminary professor, who taught for 32 years in the disciplines of Spiritual Formation and Wesley Studies. Author and co-author of 42 books. Also a retired Elder in The Florida Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church.
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