And Peter answered Him and said, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water. So He said, “Come.” And when Peter had come down out of the boat, he walked on the water to go to Jesus. But when he saw that the wind was boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink he cried out, saying, “Lord, save me!”
For a number of days, I have been thinking about the fullness we receive from God when we pray. When we make the connection with our Lord in prayer, there is nothing more sweet, there is nothing more loving, and there is nothing more powerful. My time in prayer seems to be all the time. I’m often reminded about something or someone or I hear a prayer need and I make that connection with Jesus and time seems to stand still for the few minutes we talk to each other.
A Scripture comes to mind in God’s Word that I think talks about the attitude of prayer and the posture of prayer. I think, as humans, we tend to make this more complicated than we should. Here is what I mean.
The Parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector – Luke 18:9-14 NKJV
“Also He spoke this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others: “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, ‘God, I thank You that I am not like other men—extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this tax collector. I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I possess.’ And the tax collector, standing afar off, would not so much as raise his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me a sinner!’ I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”
Jesus explains that it’s all about the humbleness and honesty of the heart that resides in the tax collector. It was NOT about the fancy words, the prominence of the Pharisee, or even that he spoke loudly to draw attention to himself. The difference was the position of the heart. But recently, I also was impressed about our foundational Scripture verse in Matthew in regards to humble prayer. In the midst of Peter beginning to sink, his eyes were refocused on his Lord and he knew where his help would come from. He simply said, “Lord, save me!” “Three little words.”
I’ve heard those words used before. Not long and drawn out prayers, but three simple words that carried the same impact as a detailed and purposeful prayer. “Lord, save me!” or “Jesus, save me!” or “Lord, help me!” I’m reminded of my dad as he was being hung by his kidnappers in the woods in Florida when he cried out to God, “Jesus, save me!” And not too long ago, when I felt the world crashing down around me. I was sinking fast in a whirlpool of emotion and pressure. I felt I couldn’t even stand any longer under the incredible weight of where I was. And I just prayed, “Lord, help me!”
I said before, I think, as humans, we tend to make this more complicated than we should. There’s room for purposeful prayers that we allow the Holy Spirit to lead us in. Like prayers for others, prayers for our families, prayers for our nation, and so forth. These kinds of prayers also carry incredible power when we are connected to Jesus in them. But in those times, when all we see is our Savior and all we know is that He is faithful, those “Three Little Words” will cause Heaven to rise up, will cause Almighty God to move, will cause the Power and the Presence of the Holy Spirit to gather us up and rescue us.
I know of another set of “Three Little Words” that also carry incredible power. Those words are “I Love You!” And you know what? That is exactly what Jesus says to us when we pray in humbleness, brokenness, and with Jesus on our minds. When we pray as Peter prayed, “Lord, save me!” Jesus responds with “I Love You!”
Dear Lord, thank You for responding to our prayers. Help us to connect to You in prayer. Thank You that when we cry out to You, Lord help me, You respond. Teach us Lord to remain humble and broken before You in prayer. May we always come to You with the attitude and position of humility. May our prayers be led by Your Holy Spirit and may we honor and glorify You within them. In Jesus Name. AMEN.
Don’t believe me, believe God!