Corrie ten Boom said: “Don’t pray when you feel like it. Have an appointment with the Lord and keep it. A man is powerful on his knees.” That is a very important aspect of our prayer life. We must separate time to pray. The biggest excuse in our generation is that we do not have time. Charles Buxton has this to say about lack of time: “You will never find time for anything. If you want time you must make it.”
7. We should separate a time to pray
Even though circumstances may dictate when we pray, and we should pray when a necessity comes up. They should not substitute a specific time during the day for prayer. Of course, we would say, “I am too busy.” This is what R. A. Torrey has to say about that: “We are too busy to pray, and so we are too busy to have power. We have a great deal of activity, but we accomplish little; many services but few conversions; much machinery but few results.”
In the Bible we learn that a time to pray should be part of our daily routine. “Seven times a day I praise you for your righteous laws-Psalm 119:164.” Even though most of the commentators think that the number seven is used symbolically as a number of perfection, others would say that the psalmist would separate seven periods during the day to praise God.
In the book of Daniel we learn that three times a day he would pray facing Jerusalem. “Now when Daniel learned that the decree had been published, he went home to his upstairs room where the windows opened toward Jerusalem. Three times a day he got down on his knees and prayed, giving thanks to his God, just as he had done before – Daniel 6:10.” That tradition was followed throughout the Bible until the New Testament, where we find Peter and John going to the Temple for prayer. “One day Peter and John were going up to the temple at the time of prayer — at three in the afternoon – Acts 3:1.” The Jews observed three times of prayer—morning (9:00 AM), afternoon (3:00 PM), and evening (sunset). Peter and John were going to the Temple for the afternoon prayer meeting.
In the sermon of the mountain Jesus made clear that we should not only have a specific place to pray, but also a specific time to pray. “And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. 6 But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. 7 And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words – Matthew 6:5-7.” For Jesus this should be a special time when you meet with God and bring your prayers.
Martin Luther designated two to three hours in the morning for his prayers. This is what he says, “If I fail to spend two hours in prayer each morning, the devil gets the victory through the day. I have so much business I cannot get on without spending three hours daily in prayer.” I know that nowadays, with our busy schedules, we could not find that kind of time to dedicate for prayer. But this should not impede us from having specific brief prayer times during the day: when you wake-up, before breakfast, during the mid-morning break, before lunch, during mid-afternoon break, before dinner, and before bed-time. If you commute, you can take some time to pray while in the car. We just need to be creative and use those specific times to talk with our God.
I pray that God will help you to find the best times to meet with Him during the day.
Have a blessed week,