Praying aloud

While clicking around Stuff Christians Like, I found myself interested in Stuff #1262 (yes, Jon Acuff‘s been at this for a looooong time!): nervousness about praying in front of others.

I am always happy to pray for others, either in private or out loud. With the exception of my prayers before going to bed, I pretty much audibly pray all day. I don’t know why, and I never gave it any thought until after I read his blog post.

Do you ever feel nervous about praying out loud? Better yet, should you feel nervous about praying aloud? Is it public speaking worries, or the unnecessary fear that you won’t pray “right”? The obvious answer to all this is that prayer is not for us, but for the Lord…but there is more to this.

Prayer is our most direct means of connecting with Christ. Perhaps there is a performance aspect to it, but when I searched Nave’s Topical Bible, I found several instances where prayer can be…

  • a petition for courage (Daniel 6:10)
  • a source of strength during hard times (Genesis 32:1, 43:1; Exodus 17:4)
  • a way of showing deeper devotion during fasting (Daniel 9:3)
  • a way to seek answers and miracles (1 Samuel 12:16-18), and
  • a fundamental piece to the house of the Lord (Matthew 21:13, Mark 11:17)

Nave’s notes well over 100 instances that “prayer” is pertinent in the Bible. If it is that important to the Gospel, we can deduce that it is important that we commit to it, regardless of whether or not someone can hear us. To be able to pray out loud shows confidence in God’s promises for His children. There are some circumstances where this activity could lead to major problems (prosecution and exile come to mind) but it should not be avoided.

~ Ashley

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