All of us have people in our lives whose spiritual welfare depends upon our faithful vigilance in prayer. The moment we determine to pray daily, though, Satan seeks to distract us. When we have time to pray, we no longer feel the same inclination and have to fight listlessness. We kneel to pray and wake up fifteen minutes later and think we might as well forget trying. Satan suggests that this is the perfect time to do that cleaning we had postponed.
We're tempted to let the smallest excuses deny us our prayer times. Hudson Taylor said Satan will find something to keep us from praying even if it is adjusting a window shade.
I am inspired by the priority the apostles gave to prayer. They learned that the widows were being neglected, and what could have been more important than caring for them? After all, "Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows" (James 1:27). They somehow knew, though, that even caring for the widows was not to come before their praying. They found others to care for the widows and then said, we "will give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word" (Acts 6:4).
When we choose to skip prayer, perhaps Jesus would say, "If you, even you, had only known...what would bring you peace" (Luke 19:42). Some day the rewards of faithful praying will be evident, and we will be so glad we continued to pray even when we could see no results.
Jesus, who has perfect understanding of the value of prayer and who is our example, lives to make intercession. Could it be He wants us to have prayer as our main role also?
Dear Jesus, help me to place as high a value on prayer as I will someday wish I had.
"As for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord by failing to pray for you" (1 Samuel 12:23).