“O God, you are my God, earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you, my body longs for you, in a dry and weary land where there is no water” (Psalm 63:1).
Prayerlessness is a normal experience that happens to all believers from time to time. We are used to being entertained, getting instant feedback, and having our needs immediately met, so we forget how ordinary a dry well is in our faith journey. If we believe it is not ordinary, the dry well can be a confusing time. If we are not feeling something or doing something or accomplishing something, we can begin to fear that God is absent from us. And when we begin to fear God’s absence, we become ashamed of the dry place. We think it is caused by our failure or spiritual weakness, rather than an ordinary part of the journey. The temptation is to drop one’s practice of prayer when the experience becomes dry.
A way to avoid this temptation in the church is to mentor and disciple followers so that when we find ourselves in a dry place we recognize it, consider the causes for it, and then take steps to stay connected to the vine rather than drift into continual prayerlessness. There are others who have been through the experience of dryness who can assure us that His Presence is still very near, and that our well will be filled with water once again as we are faithful to continue seeking.
O God, You are my God! I am earnestly seeking You because my soul is thirsty and my body longs for You! I feel like I am in a dry and weary land where there is no water, and yet, I know that You are near. I know that as I am faithful to stay attached to the Vine, that water will gush forth once again! Keep me close during these times of dryness so that I might drink deeply from Your well…so deeply that I will never be without Your living water, even in times of drought.
–Adapted from Giving Ourselves to Prayer: An Acts 6:4 Primer for Ministry (Chapter 35, The Problem of Prayerlessness by Mary Kate Morse). This book is available at prayershop.org. Use the code CONPSP3 at checkout to receive an additional 10% discount.
Glorify God as the ruler over events both great and small, who knows not only the fate of nations but also the number of hairs on your head (Lk. 12:6-7). Thank God for hearing your prayers. Confess your struggles in prayer to God, and ask for his help and grace in this area (Heb. 4:14-16). Commit yourself to greater discipline in prayer for the needs of others. Ask God to give you wisdom as you pray for specific needs.
Pray for Christian churches around the world, that they may be known not as “houses of activity” but as “houses of prayer” (Mt. 21:13).
–Prayer Points taken from Patterns for Prayer by Alvin VanderGriend.