by Roger Thomas

This content is part of a series.

Soul Talk: The Power of Prayer (5 of 7)
Series: The Care and Feeding of A Soul
Roger Thomas
Matthew 6:5-13

A little boy and his father walked along a country road laughing and talking, just having a good old time. They came across a large stone sitting at the edge of the road. The boy looked at the stone and thought for a moment. Then he asked his father, "Do you think I can move that rock?" The father didn't hesitate. "I'm sure you can--if you use all your strength!"

That was all the lad needed. He ran to the rock. He pushed and he pushed. He grunted and groaned. Beads of sweat popped out on his forehead. But the rock didn't move. Not an inch, not half an inch! Finally, the boy slumped to the ground, defeat written all over his face. "I can't do it." His father put his hand on his son's shoulder. "I still think you can do it," he said. "You just didn't use all your strength." The boy looked up with raised brow. "You didn't ask me to help."

That parable provides a good backdrop for our next mile marker in our journey toward "True Spirituality--Finding the Life We've Always Wanted." Prayer is an absolute essential for the soul that wants to walk with God. Here's the bottom line. Until you pray, you haven't tried your hardest. You haven't used all your strength.

Here in the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus cites prayer as one of three "acts of righteousness" that deserve his follower's attention. Let's consider the Master's teachings on this important topic under three headings: the promise of prayer, the problem of prayer, and the practice of prayer.

First, consider the Promise of Prayer. Sometime ago, a "Family Circus" cartoon showed the father helping one of his kids with homework. The two sat at the kitchen table while mom and daughter were doing dishes. A smaller child played nearby. Dad reviews his son's lesson, "What is the greatest power source in the world?"

When he asks the question, little cartoon bubbles pop up ov ...

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