Worshipping in Prayer

1 John 3:22-24
22 And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight. 23 And this is his commandment, That we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as he gave us commandment. 24 And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.
How do you pray? Some sit down with their “grocery list” and read through it as they bring to God all the things they would like to see Him do in their life and the lives of those around them. Some see prayer as a spiritual exercise – one more box to check to makes sure they are doing all that God has told them to do. Some simply see prayer as a good luck charm, thinking that if they pray for it then maybe God will help them realize their desires. Is there anything wrong with bringing our requests to God? No – Philippians 4:6 tells us we can bring our requests to God. Is praying something that we are supposed to do? Yes – throughout scripture we are told to pray (Matthew 5:44, Romans 12:12, Colossians 4:2, 1 Thessalonians 5:17 to name a few). However prayer is much more than bringing a list before God. Prayer is much more than a command. When we come before His throne, kneeling in His presence, confronted with His power and our own need, Prayer becomes so much more. Prayer becomes worship!
John gives us a couple of ingredients to help us as we come to God in prayer. We can have confidence in God when we keep his commandments and the first is Faith in Christ. During the aftermath of the 9-11 terror attacks there was a call for prayer across the world. Prayers went up to false gods that fell on deaf ears. The object of our faith does matter! Without faith in Christ we have no access to the Father until that prayer is cried out to place our faith in Christ for salvation. The second commandment is to love one another. It may seem like John is repeating himself as he mentions that we are to love again, and that is because he is. In Matthew 22:37-40 Jesus tells us that the entire law, every commandment is summarized in two commandments – to love the Lord with all your heart soul and mind (Deuteronomy 6:5) and to love our neighbor as ourselves (Leviticus 19:18). This is so important that Jesus tells us in Matthew 5:23-24 that if we come before God and realize that there is something between us and another that before we can worship we must first go and reconcile with them.
When we place our faith in Christ, and live out His love to others we can come to God in confidence through prayer, knowing that we dwell in Him, and He dwells in us. Don’t skim over that truth! The God of the Universe, The Redeemer of your soul, The all-powerful, all knowing, ever present God dwells in you. And when we kneel before Him in prayer with the realization of who He is – then your prayer ceases to be a list of desires, but a time of worship!
Today as we Refocus our hearts and minds on Christ let us learn what it means to prayerfully worship our Savior. When was the last time you knelt in His presence just to praise him? Try this, spend some time with God today and don’t ask for anything – simply worship!