God is delighted by all our prayers, no matter how awkward

Updated: 2013-08-07T23:23:57Z


Tribune Media Services

DEAR BILLY GRAHAM: I know I need to pray, but I don’t because I’m afraid I’ll make a mistake and God will get angry at me. I haven’t even taught our children any prayers, because I’m afraid God won’t like them. How can I learn to pray correctly so this won’t happen? — D.S.

DEAR D.S.: The key is for you to understand in a deeper way who God is and what he’s really like, because I have good news for you: God isn’t at all like you think he is.

Let me explain this by asking you a question: What did you do when your children first began to talk? Did you get angry at them because they didn’t pronounce their words exactly right or talk in long sentences? No, of course not. You were delighted when they first said “Mama” or “Dada” because you love them, and you were thankful they were learning to communicate, even if they didn’t speak perfectly.

The same is true for God. He is our heavenly father. He loves us and delights in even our simplest prayers. Don’t think of God as a stern, unbending father waiting to punish us if we aren’t perfect. He knows what we’re like and he wants to welcome us into his presence as his dearly loved children. Jesus said, “If you … know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!” (Matthew 7:11).

How do we know God is like this? We know it because he sent his son, Jesus Christ, into the world to make our salvation possible. Have you accepted him into your life? Do so today, and then thank God that you can come to him in prayer every moment of the day.

© Tribune Media Services 8/8

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