When You Pray...Do You Merely Talk To The Ceiling?
Shep Johnson
Sunday, October 2, 2016

In Exodus 33:18-23 (NLT) Moses asked God, “ ... show me your glorious presence.”  And the LORD replied, “I will make all my goodness pass before you, and I will call out my name, Yahweh, before you. For I will show mercy to anyone I choose, and I will show compassion to anyone I choose.  But you may not look directly at my face, for no one may see me and live.” The LORD continued, “Look, stand near me on this rock.  As my glorious presence passes by, I will hide you in the crevice of the rock and cover you with my hand until I have passed by. Then I will remove my hand and let you see me from behind. But my face will not be seen.”

Later Moses made his way up Mount Sinai and the Bible says in Exodus 34:5-8 (NASB95),“The LORD descended in the cloud and stood there with him as he called upon the name of the LORD.  Then the LORD passed by in front of him and proclaimed, “The LORD, the LORD God, compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in lovingkindness and truth; who keeps lovingkindness for thousands, who forgives iniquity, transgression and sin; yet He will by no means leave the guilty unpunished, visiting the iniquity of fathers on the children and on the grandchildren to the third and fourth generations.”

 And the Bible says, “Moses made haste to bow low toward the earth and worship.”

How would your prayer life change if during your prayers the Lord came down and revealed as much of His glory as you could bear and still live?

Moses saw God’s glory from the cleft of the rock and he bowed low and worshiped. I don’t know that I could bow low enough.

Isaiah had an experience like that in Isaiah 6 as the Bible says he saw the Lord “sitting on a throne, lofty and exalted, with the train of His robe filling the temple” and the seraphim circling the throne and crying out, “Holy, Holy, Holy, is the LORD of hosts, the whole earth is full of His glory.”

So what did Isaiah do when he saw the glory of God?  The Bible says in Isaiah 6:5 (NASB95) that he cried out, “Woe is me, for I am ruined! Because I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts.”

When you pray, do you pause to consider the God to whom you are praying, or do you merely talk to the ceiling?

Jesus said in John 14:21 (NASB95), “ ... he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and will disclose Myself [reveal Myself] to him.”

Do you love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength?  Jesus said He reveals Himself to those who love Him.  What an incredible thought!  Jesus reveals Himself to those who love Him.

This week as you pray to the Triune, Sovereign, Holy, Righteous, Just, Loving, Merciful, Gracious, Omnipotent, Omniscient, Omnipresent, and Immutable God we serve, tell Him how much you love Him and why you love Him.  Then ask Him to show you His glory SO THAT you might worship Him more truly, humbly, and fully.

Fanny Crosby wrote, “A wonderful Savior is Jesus my Lord, a wonderful Savior to me; He hideth my soul in the cleft of the rock, where rivers of pleasure I see. He hideth my soul in the cleft of the rock, that shadows a dry, thirsty land;He hideth my life in the depths of His love, and covers me there with His hand, and covers me there with His hand.”

The more we understand and appreciate the glory of our great God when we pray, the more meaningful and effectual our prayers will become.

  Brother Shep