Francis Chan on Recovering the Mystery and Honor of Prayer

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In this videoFrancis Chan, pointing to the glorious throne room scenes in Revelation 4 and 5 and to Paul’s weakness in prayer in Romans 8, suggests that the most powerful lesson we must learn in our prayer is to be humble.

What’s one practical thing I could do to improve my prayer life?

Be humble. Think about that scene in Revelation 4 and 5. Do I dare approach that throne? And yet now Scripture says I can. Who am to come before that throne?

This is the kind of humility that says in Romans 8, “we do not know what to pray for as we ought” (v. 26). I don’t know what to pray, I don’t know how I should pray or what to pray for. I need you Holy Spirit, and God give me the words to say that are according to your will. And Paul says that “he Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words” (Rom. 8:26).

Our response of humility should sound something like this: “I’m coming before him? The King? I don’t even know what to say, but he says that I can pray in the Spirit, and the Spirit is going to intercede for me and through me. And, oh God, this is insane. Okay, I’m going to come before you. I’m going to need the Holy Spirit. God give me the words to say.”

We don’t understand what a mystery, what an honor we get to come before the throne of God. Instead, I hear people that almost act like they’re doing God a favor by showing up to a service. We’re so used to people begging you to show up for a prayer meeting. So when they finally attend, everyone is patting them on the back, and they end up feeling pretty good about themselves. We can’t approach the throne like that.

We must come humbly before God’s throne. Just think to yourself, Are you kidding me that I get to do this right now? Unreal. I’m about to come before him in prayer!