There is a section in Psalm 119 that walks me through some areas of prayer.
Let your constant love comfort me,
as you have promised me, your servant. – Psalm 119:76 GNT
This is how I am persuaded to pray – knowing that my sin will be pardoned and I will be reconciled to God. It is here that I receive the peace I have been looking for and it is here, in my heart and my conscience, through the power of the Holy Spirit, and based on the promises of God, that I find myself “comforted” even before my troubles are resolved.
May the proud be ashamed for falsely accusing me;
as for me, I will meditate on your instructions.
May those who honor you come to me—
all those who know your commands. – Psalm 119:78-79 GNT
It is a prayer and maybe it is a spoken declaration of hope – it is when I breathe not a request necessarily, but a desire of my heart – that is, not a formal request.
Your commandments are all trustworthy;
people persecute me with lies—help me! – Psalm 119:86 GNT
If God’s commandments are trustworthy, they make God truthful and faithful. Those who go against God are thereby not. If those against God find themselves in this postion, am I not encouraged to pray and hope for deliverance and salvation?
In humility I get down on my knees.
I am the high and holy God, who lives forever. I live in a high and holy place, but I also live with people who are humble and repentant, so that I can restore their confidence and hope. – Isaiah 57:15 GNT
It is a great place to be in prayer because I join my spiritual expression with my physical one and together they reveal the attitude of my heart. I feel that if I really want to know God, there needs to be humility in my heart. That is what I pray. So I look for salvation from my sin, pride, selfishness and the tendencies to exalt myself.
That is why the miracle of praying for my enemies never ceases to amaze me.
But now I tell you: love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you. – Matthew 5:44 GNT
It has to be one of the deepest expressions of love. It is why, very early on in my walk with God that I would seek this above all.
The issue is not just doing nice or helpful things, but it is the ability to see, hear, engage with that person and truly love them for who they are and where they are. I think Jesus expressed this on the cross and I know Stephen echoed His words as he was being stoned and Paul prayed in a similar passion when you think of the Jewish people being his enemies wherever he went.
I did not see that it is in the process of being worshipped that God communicates His presence to men. It is not of course the only way. But for many people at many times the ‘fair beauty of the Lord’ is revealed chiefly or only while they worship Him together. Even in Judaism the essence of the sacrifice was not really that men gave bulls and goats to God, but that by their so doing God gave Himself to men; in the central act of our own worship of course this is far clearer — there it is manifestly, even physically, God who gives and we who receive. The miserable idea that God should in any sense need, or crave for, our worship like a vain woman wanting compliments, or a vain author presenting his new books to people who never met or heard him, is implicitly answered by the words, ‘If I be hungry I will not tell thee‘ (50:12). Even if such an absurd Deity could be conceived, He would hardly come to us, the lowest of rational creatures, to gratify His appetite. – C.S.Lewis