Tag Archives: prayer

Four Hundred Texts on Love (Third Century) 41

87.  Humility consists in constant prayer combined with tears and suffering. For this ceaseless calling upon God for help prevents us from foolishly growing confident in our own strength and wisdom, and from putting ourselves above others. These are dangerous diseases of the passion of pride. We constantly “put ourselves above others.” It hardly even […]

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How to Speak of God

In this post, I plan to continue the train of thought I began in Speaking Carefully About God and explore how we then should speak of God. I’m not an expert in any way, so take everything I say with a grain of salt. These are just some of the thoughts and ideas I have […]

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Why Do We Pray? 6 – Intercessory Prayer

At this point in my series, the question that should arise in any reader’s mind is a straightforward one. How does intercessory prayer fit into everything I’ve attempted to describe? It’s a good question and I think it’s one every person who deeply thinks about Christian prayer must face at some point. And it’s a […]

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Why Do We Pray? 5 – Communion

What if we asked what prayer is rather than trying to focus on what prayer does? That’s a different sort of question, isn’t it? And perhaps as we understand something more about the essence of Christian prayer, it’s activity will become a little clearer. So what is prayer? I would like to suggest that Christian […]

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Why Do We Pray? 4 – To Create Community?

If we are not primarily seeking to change God or change ourselves when we engage in Christian prayer, perhaps we pray to establish common ground amongst ourselves and form a community? This facet is probably less visible or recognized in low church evangelical settings of individual “spontaneous” prayer, but traditionally Christians have recited prayers and […]

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Four Hundred Texts on Love (Third Century) 21

50.  Through genuine love for God we can drive out the passions. Love for God is this: to choose Him rather than the world, and the soul rather than the flesh, by despising the things of this world and by devoting ourselves constantly to Him through self-control, love, prayer, psalmody and so on. Love heals […]

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Why Do We Pray? 3 – To Change Ourselves?

I want to make a distinction on this point. It’s true that devoting ourselves to a rule of prayer will almost certainly change us. Even the act of making space in our lives for such a rule of necessity alters the rhythm of our days. On the other hand, I’m not willing to say that’s […]

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Four Hundred Texts on Love (Third Century) 20

48.  As has been said many times, in everything we do God examines our motive, to see whether we are doing it for His sake or for some other purpose. Thus when we desire to do something good, we should not do it for the sake of popularity; we should have God as our goal, […]

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Why Do We Pray? 2 – To Change God?

It’s an interesting question when you think about it. As Christians, do we pray in order to change God’s mind or actions about something? Sometimes, I think it can seem that way. We may not want to express it that bluntly, but in practice is that not often the case? However, I perceive several issues […]

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Why Do We Pray? 1 – Series Intro

Sometime last fall, a blog I follow published a poll asking respondents why we pray. (I think it was Tony Jones, but it’s been long enough that I’m not certain.) If I recall correctly, the poll provided two answers: we pray to change God or we pray to change ourselves. Ever since then the question, […]

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