One of my favourite TV personalities is talk show host James Corden. You know that Englishman who drives around in a black Range Rover and sings with famous people.
If I told you I was friends with Mr Corden, you’d ask, “That’s nice but… ah…How often do you get to see him?”
If I answered, “Well… I haven’t actually met him yet, but I’ve watched his show every day, I’ve read a lot of articles about him and we kind of look similar,” you’d say I was nuts. We can’t really know someone or have a real relationship with them without spending time together.
God wants to have a relationship with us. It’s why He sent Jesus to die for our sins — so we can have a relationship with Him again.
As Christians, we grow our relationship with God through reading the Bible and prayer. Reading the Bible is how we hear from God, and prayer is how we speak to Him in return. Kind of like a phone call mixed with an old snail mail letter. This process of talking to God, listening for His voice and reading His Word is how we spend quality time with Him.
Just reading the Bible by itself does not give us a relationship with God. People who don’t believe in God have read the Bible and some of them can even quote from the Bible better than some Christians, but they don’t have a relationship with God. You see just like our interaction with each other we need to communicate both ways with God as well. So therefore, prayer is an integral part of growing in a relationship with God.
A simple way to pray is the ACTS prayer model…
Adoration: Give God praise and honour for who He is as Lord over all.
Confession: Honestly deal with the sin in your prayer life.
Thanksgiving: Verbalise what you’re grateful for in your life and in the world around you.
Supplication: Pray for the needs of others and yourself.
-Simon Hutton, Chaplain