“It happened that while Jesus was praying in a certain place, after He had finished, one of His disciples said to Him, “Lord, teach us to pray just as John also taught his disciples.” Luke 11:1 NASB
Do we know how to pray as we ought? According to the bible we don’t. Since we don’t know how to pray as we should the Bible tells us that the Holy Spirit intercedes for us. The fact is, no one can teach us to pray but God. Others can give suggestions and advice, but no one can truly teach us to pray; except the one to which we pray.
In this verse, we see one of the disciples first listening to Jesus pray. When Jesus finished praying it was as if the disciple came to Jesus and said, I want to pray like that, just like you did. I have been in the presence of some mighty men of God and stood in awe of their prayer. It was as if they were calling fire down from heaven. D.L. Moody gave testimony of traveling to England to visit with Charles Spurgeon. When Moody attended the Metropolitan Tabernacles service he said it wasn’t the heavenly choir that impressed him, nor was it Spurgeon’s masterful preaching, rather, he was impressed with the prayer. Could you imaging being with Jesus while He prayed? These Jewish disciples of Jesus had no doubt been taught to pray from childhood. More than likely they prayed daily. However, they never prayed as Jesus prayed, but they wanted to.
Jesus asked the disciples to do many tasks. He asks of us the same. The greatest of tasks is to go and preach the gospel to all creation. Of the many tasks Jesus asked of us we never find in scripture anyone asking Jesus how to do them. The only request of any sort is how to pray. The fact is, the tasks Jesus calls us to do are empowered by prayer. If we don’t pray we shouldn’t expect any power or provision.
Yet, we so often do not know what to pray for. So, where do we start? Lord, teach is to pray. I don’t know how to pray as I should. Will You guide me? I have my own agenda and my own goals. Will you lead me to Yours? I am week and easily distracted. Will You keep me focused and on track. Prayer begins and ends with Jesus. Our level of dependency upon Him will determine the level of power in our prayer. We don’t put faith in our faith, nor do we put faith in prayer in and of itself; we put faith in Christ alone. For this reason, the beginning of all is, Lord, teach us to pray. Make that your daily prayer.