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Why pray for 45 minutes?

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In discipling others, I advocate an extended time of prayer – 45 minutes for starters. Why? Why not just pray throughout the day? Jesus said, “Can’t you stick it out with me for a single hour? Stay alert; be in prayer so that you don’t wander into temptation without even knowing you’re in …
By Seth Barnes

In discipling others, I advocate an extended time of prayer – 45 minutes for starters. Why? Why not just pray throughout the day?

jess prayingJesus said, “Can’t you stick it out with me for a single hour? Stay alert; be in prayer so that you don’t wander into temptation without even knowing you’re in danger. There is a part of you that is eager, ready for anything in God. But there is another part that’s as lazy as an old dog sleeping by the fire.” (Matthew 26:40-41, The Message)

Jesus always seems to be giving people three chances to get it right. He caught the disciples sleeping two more times after that. They, like us, had to fight their flesh. All he asked them for was an hour.

We have a relational faith and relationships seem to need regular focused time. For my marriage to be at its best, I need a good hour a day with Karen. Something happens with that kind of commitment. Our spirits connect. All the superficial stuff and the task-oriented stuff recedes into the background. We build the habits of telling the truth and trusting.

The patter of periodic sentence prayers throughout the day doesn’t accomplish this any more than it would with your spouse (“Hey, can you take out the garbage?” – see, we just connected). Think of it this way: We were made in God’s image. He has the relational attributes of a person. He wants devoted, focused time with us.

There is nothing magic about an hour, the South Korean pastors routinely pray for three. 45 minutes is just a starting point. It gets you headed in a direction and helps you build some momentum. If you’re struggling to kick-start your prayer life, why not make the commitment? Let me know if you do so in the blog comment section and I’ll send you an email in a week to check and see if it worked.

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