A Note from Hixon Frank
Hixon Frank

Hey Church!

I was a sophomore in 1983 (you do the math) when Coach Sargent (my tennis Coach) told me he needed a student to pray at a graduation event and that I was going to do it!

“In front of everyone?” I protested.

“Yep,” was his only reply.

“But I’ve never prayed in front of other people before!” I said nervously.

“Well,” he said as only a coach can, “looks like you are going to jump into the deep end! Its next week, wear a tie.”

At that, my fate was sealed, and I was to pray out loud, in front of my friends at a school event.  So, I wrote out my prayer using every church word I could think of, had a local youth pastor take a look at it then re-wrote it with all of his corrections.  By the time I was finished, my prayer was part King James, part Living Bible and part quotes from “The Godfather.

Armed with my handwritten 5th edit, I approached the microphone at the appropriate time and … nailed it! My timing was good, I was clear, and people were quiet. Coach Sargent said he was proud of me, teachers thanked me, and other students were encouraging in their own way. For a moment, I was a “Big Man on Campus.” 

Not long after, the pride I felt over my well executed public prayer started to give way to a sense of dread. Had I made a show of God’s gift of prayer?  Was that what prayer was … just a clever presentation? Had I offended God? I didn’t know much, having been a Christian only a short time, but I did have a keen sense of the holiness of God.

And so began my journey with prayer…. The more I have learned over the last 41 years, the more I am convinced that the following statement is true…

Prayer is so easy a child can do it, but so complex that it takes a lifetime to explore its depths.”

The Bible does have some examples of people praying in Public. Even Jesus seemed to pray publicly in John 6:11. But the exhortation in Scripture is prayer should primarily be a private affair.

Matthew 6:5-7

“Whenever you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites, because they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by people. Truly I tell you, they have their reward. But when you pray, go into your private room, shut your door, and pray to your Father who is in secret.And your Father who sees in secret will reward you. When you pray, don’t babble like the Gentiles, since they imagine they’ll be heard for their many words.

The beauty of being alone is that we are typically free from pretense, putting on and pretending. In fact, the implication is to go away where no one even knows you are praying. Go where no one sees you or even knows you are in prayer. It purifies our motives, doesn’t it? It allows for transparency with God and for a revealing of our hearts towards Him. 

As we look to build an army of humble and fierce praying people, we must first start in secret. It may be your actual private room, but it can also be your kitchen, den, car, office, pasture, or even in a deer blind! The point is that it is private, without interruption and focused. AND… you will never get earthly credit for it!

That may be the reason that many of our private prayer lives are infrequent to non-existent. But what if we had a robust private prayer life?  What if “you could not wait” to engage God in prayer each day where no one knew about it? Like a little secret between you and God?

Over the next several weeks will look at 7 different biblical aspects to prayer and how each one will drive you deeper and deeper into intimacy with God. (Concept from “Focus on the Family”) This by no means will be exhaustive, butshould offer a firm handle of each concept and why it is important.

My encouragement to you is to simply…

1. Pick a time to meet with God in prayer.
2. Pick a place where you can “shut the door.
3. Give yourself 3 weeks to develop the habit of meeting God in secret, in prayer.

Let’s start this week with ADORING GOD through prayer!

When you get in secret. Slow down, get your favorite Bible and read. 

Psalm 104:1-4

1 My soul, bless the Lord!

Lord my God, you are very great;

you are clothed with majesty and splendor.

2 He wraps himself in light as if it were a robe,

spreading out the sky like a canopy,

3 laying the beams of his palace

on the waters above,

making the clouds his chariot,

walking on the wings of the wind,

4 and making the winds his messengers,

flames of fire his servants.

Adoration is praising God for who He is. God is the Lord of all and deserves our praise because of that alone. As you read the verse above, do so like you are talking to God in prayer and agreeing that He is all of these things. Check out these three prayers from the Bible as examples of adoration: Psalm 99:5, 1 Kings 8:22-24, Nehemiah 9:5b-6. 

Additionally, you may want to add the things that He has been to you in your life personally. Your comforter, provider, healer etc.… Or perhaps you are aware of his profound work in the life of a friend or family member. Adore Him for those things a well.

When we are trained by prayer, our time ADORING GOD will get longer as we are refined by prayer. Perhaps even one day forgetting to ask God for anything at all! 

You have been prayed for today!