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Start with prayer, stay on course

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A few months ago I had the privilege of writing an article entitled, “Spiritual Mooring Lines.” In this article, I shared how the mooring lines of a naval vessel ensure that the ship remains pier side until it is time to get underway. In other words, these physical mooring lines ensure that the ship is not at the mercy of the sea. They keep the ship from drifting out of position. Equally important are spiritual mooring lines. One important spiritual mooring line is prayer.

Prayer as a spiritual mooring line is a key component of good spiritual fitness. Prayer is to our spiritual person what oxygen is to the body. We need both in order to survive. Prayer can keep us from drifting from our morals and values. If prayer is so important, then we should understand what it is and why it is critical.

Prayer is simply talking to God, which also includes remaining silent. In essence, prayer is a two-way highway. We talk and then we listen. We should also remember that prayer is not something we do to get answers from God, although he may choose to answer or not. Prayer is about us getting to know God so that we can glorify him in all we do.

When should we cast the spiritual mooring line of prayer? Nineteenth century author and lay theologian, C. S. Lewis, advocates for first thing in the morning. He writes, “The moment you wake up each morning, all your wishes and hopes for the day rush at you like wild animals. And the first job each morning consists in shoving it all back; in listening to that other voice, taking that other point of view, letting that other, larger, stronger, quieter life come flowing in.”

Lewis is arguing that to “start here” means pray first thing in the morning. I agree. I believe this small spiritual fitness act positions our hearts and minds to pray continually throughout the day. Knowing that prayer is not a position or location makes it possible to remain pier side with God all day long.

The wonderful news is that God has not only invited us to pray to Him, but He has provided the means and valuable outcome to our prayers if we accept His invitation. Hebrews 4:6 reads, “Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” What a privilege to approach God’s throne of grace so that we may receive mercy and find grace when we need help. Start here. Cast your spiritual mooring line of prayer first thing in the morning.