How to End Prayerlessness for Spiritual Survival
Prayerlessness Must End for Spiritual Survival
Prayerlessness has gone on long enough and now must end, if your spiritual life is to continue. Am I being too dramatic? Read this and ask God to show you what state your heart is in, and how urgent it is to put an end to your prayerlessness.
This is week 4 of 5 weeks in which, every Tuesday and Thursday, I will be posting an excerpt from the work entitled, “Do You Pray?” by J. C. Ryle. My husband read this to our family a little bit every morning in our family devotions. That was many years ago, but, it affected us all for life. And, each time I read it again, it profoundly affects my spiritual life. This has been no exception. I'm praying it is life-changing for you, too.
It would be so encouraging to hear how God is using this Series in your life, too! I have been challenged to pray more specifically, and not to pray small. You know, praying according to what I think would be reasonable to have happen. Instead, praying so big that when God answers, everyone will know it had to be Him! Let me know in the comments or send me an email (my email address is at the bottom of this post) how God has changed your habits, or your thinking about prayer through reading this Series!
Due to the length of Part 8, I have divided it into two parts. This is Part 8A, "How to End Prayerlessness for Spiritual Survival." Part 8B will be called, "The First Steps How to Be Saved By Jesus." I'm looking forward to sharing that one with you! Then we will have Part 9, "How to Have a Prayer Life That You and God Both Love." There will be two more parts after that, that I am excited to tell you about later!
Read All the Posts in This Series on Prioritizing Your Spiritual Life,
"Do You Pray," by J. C. Ryle:
And, now we continue the Series on Prioritizing Your Spiritual Life, "Do You Pray?" by J. C. Ryle, Part 8A:
How to End Prayerlessness for Spiritual Survival
"And now it is high time for me to bring this tract to an end. I trust I have brought before you things that will be seriously considered. I heartily pray God that this consideration may be blessed to your soul."
Prayerlessness is Dangerous
"Let me speak a parting word to those who do not pray. I dare not suppose that all who read these pages are praying people. If you are a prayerless person, suffer me to speak to you this day on God’s behalf.
Prayerless reader, I can only warn you, but I do warn you most solemnly. I warn you that you are in a position of fearful danger. If you die in your present state, you are a lost soul. You will only rise again to be eternally miserable. I warn you that of all professing Christians you are most utterly without excuse. There is not a single good reason that you can show for living without prayer."
There is not a single good reason that you can show for living without prayer. J. C. Ryle
Prayerlessness Because You Don't Know How
"It is useless to say you know not how to pray. Prayer is the simplest act in all religion. It is simply speaking to God. It needs neither learning nor wisdom nor book knowledge to begin it. It needs nothing but heart and will. The weakest infant can cry when he is hungry. The poorest beggar can hold out his hand for alms, and does not wait to find fine words. The most ignorant man will find something to say to God, if he has only a mind."
Prayerlessness Due to Lack of Space
"It is useless to say you have no convenient place to pray in. Any man can find a place private enough, if he is disposed. Our Lord prayed on a mountain; Peter on the housetop; Isaac in the field; Nathanael under the fig tree; Jonah in the whale’s belly. Any place may become a closet, an oratory, and a Bethel, and be to us the presence of God."
Prayerlessness Due to Lack of Time
"It is useless to say you have no time. There is plenty of time, if men will employ it. Time may be short, but time is always long enough for prayer. Daniel had the affairs of a kingdom on his hands, and yet he prayed three times a day. David was ruler over a mighty nation, and yet he says, 'Evening and morning and at noon will I pray' (Psalm 55:17). When time is really wanted, time can always be found."
"There is plenty of time, if men will employ it. Time may be short, but time is always long enough for prayer." J. C. Ryle
Prayerlessness Due to Lack of Faith
"It is useless to say you cannot pray till you have faith and a new heart, and that you must sit still and wait for them. This is to add sin to sin. It is bad enough to be unconverted and going to hell. It is even worse to say, 'I know it, but will not cry for mercy.'
"It is bad enough to be unconverted and going to hell. It is even worse to say, 'I know it, but will not cry for mercy.'" J. C. Ryle
"This is a kind of argument for which there is no warrant in Scripture. 'Call ye upon the Lord,' saith Isaiah, 'while he is near' (Isaiah 55:6). 'Take with you words, and turn unto the Lord,' says Hosea (Hosea 14:1). 'Repent and pray,' says Peter to Simon Magus (Acts 8:22). If you want faith and a new heart, go and cry to the Lord for them. The very attempt to pray has often been the quickening of a dead soul."
Prayerlessness Sends Many to Hell
"Oh, prayerless reader, who and what are you that you will not ask anything of God? Have you made a covenant with death and hell? Are you at peace with the worm and the fire? Have you no sins to be pardoned? Have you no fear of eternal torment? Have you no desire after heaven? Oh that you would awake from your present folly. Oh that you would consider your latter end."
Prayerlessness Has No Excuse
"Oh that you would arise and call upon God. Alas, there is a day coming when many shall pray loudly, 'Lord, Lord, open to us,' but all too late; when many shall cry to the rocks to fall on them and the hills to cover them, who would never cry to God."
"In all affection, I warn you, beware lest this be the end of your soul. Salvation is very near you. Do not lose heaven for want of asking."
"Evening and morning and at noon will I pray, and cry aloud: and he shall hear my voice."
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J.C. Ryle – (1816-1900), first Anglican bishop of Liverpool
J.C. Ryle was a prolific writer, vigorous preacher, faithful pastor, husband (widowed three times) and the father to five children. He was thoroughly evangelical in his doctrine and uncompromising in his Biblical principles. After being in Pastoral ministry in England for 38 years, in 1880 (at age 64) Ryle became the first bishop of Liverpool, England and remained there for 20 years. He retired in 1900 (at age 83) and died later that same year at age 84.
About the Author
Wendy Gunn helps young Christian moms have clarity and consistency prioritizing God's Unique Goals for their home, family, and life through courses and coaching.