The Pleasing Aroma of Prayer
My three-year-old son doesn’t like to pray.
He doesn’t really grasp abstract concepts like God and Jesus yet. He’s pretty sure Spiderman hung the moon in the sky.
I try not to get too fussy about it; I know these things take time. And if I am honest, prayer is one of my weakest spiritual disciplines.
I still remember sitting in a class for young seminary wives as the teacher went over a prayer notebook she had given us. The weight of the notebook was like a load of guilt on my heart as she explained how we ought to be systematically praying over each aspect of life, ministry, country, family, etc, on a daily and weekly schedule, so as to insure we didn’t miss anything.
I think I gave up right then and there.
So, I am circling back, kneeling down, and asking God to teach me.
Teach me to pray. I’m ready now.
And I’m beginning to see this: prayer is this way of making the invisible kingdom visible. For we live in this loud world, but we serve this quiet, invisible God.
In the Old Testament, the priest burned incense in the temple, and it pleased the Lord, and the priest prayed for the people of Israel.
But now, we kneel or we close our eyes, or we lift them up in prayer, and the Holy Spirit swells within us, rising to God with the fragrant aroma of burning holiness and this is our incense now.
And if we could see it, the power of these quiet, invisible prayers, rising to heaven and filling Revelation’s golden bowls before His throne, I wonder if we wouldn’t struggle so much to pray.
Abba Father inhales the sweet scent of our whispered words and He is pleased.
We believe in this invisible kingdom, we trust in You as Father, and so we pray, Thy will be done.
So be it.
Revelation 5:8 “…each one holding a harp and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints.”
Psalm 141:2 “May my prayer be counted as incense before You; the lifting up of my hands as the evening offering.”