Romans 8:26 “In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness, for we do not know how we should pray, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with inexpressible groanings.” (NET Bible)
In Ephesians 6:18 and Jude 20, God teaches us to “pray in the Holy Spirit.” Jesus called the Holy Spirit a “helper,” the support in our weakness whose help we can lean on as we pray. The Holy Spirit makes prayer a reality in the believer’s life and everyday situations. We trust the Spirit of God who produces in us a Christ-like fervency and compassion.
The Holy Spirit motivates us to pray with zealous striving and agonizing.
A few years ago, I had a conflict with someone very dear to me and the situation was too close to be seen objectively. Every time I tried to pray, I became angry and bitter and couldn’t speak the words that God would have wanted me to say. But my intense feelings made me submit before God. The Holy Spirit created within me an emotional cry that was not an eloquent plea for this person’s soul, but an impassioned voice that cried out to God for mercy on their behalf. The Holy Spirit interceded before the throne for this person in a way I couldn’t feel at that time and that I never could have expressed. All I had to do was surrender to the promptings of the Holy Spirit and humble myself before God, even if my heart was not in it.
How do we cooperate with the Holy Spirit and allow Him to speak for us?
First Step: We respond to the Holy Spirit as he reveals the needs in our lives and of those around us.
Second Step: We acknowledge our inability to accomplish any of this without God: “We must realize that we cannot change our own hearts or the heart of another person.”
Third Step: Let this become our continual attitude and depend on the Holy Spirit to renew us as we confess and take on our spiritual responsibilities which are far too much for our own strength. Real spiritual emotion and compassion is the product of the Holy Spirit. We depend on the Holy Spirit of God for our motivation in prayer.
(Adapted from A Journey to Victorious Praying by Bill Thrasher, Moody Publishers, 2003)
Let us know your thoughts. And don’t forget to journal!