“Come to me . . .” Matthew 11.28
It has been said that one of the hardest things to do is to pray. We would much rather try to solve a problem ourselves, or even worry about it, than actually to bring the issue to Jesus and leave it at his feet.
There may be a number of reasons why we find praying such a hard thing to do. Part of it may be that to pray is to acknowledge that we need help and we are not self-sufficient – and that can be such a difficult thing for us to admit. Yet that is precisely what Jesus invites us to do with these words.
It is very noticeable in the Gospels that Jesus seemed to place a high value on people sharing their needs. It was often those who actually stepped out of the crowds or who came to him who received healing. We may think that seems quite odd. Surely he could see the needs of those around him? If he loved them so much why didn’t he just get on with it and heal them?
We often have the idea that praying for our own needs should come at the end of the list of things we do in prayer: a time of worship, then thanksgiving, followed by a healthy dose of confession and then finally we can bring our requests to him. Actually, intercession for our needs is worship – it is acknowledging that he is the Lord and we have no power to help ourselves, and that we submit to his intervention in our lives. It really is OK to pray for your own needs!
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The Revd John Ryeland, Director of The Christian Healing Mission
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