Through prayer we learn how to open our hearts to Him

Published 8:07 am Friday, December 23, 2022

From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham
Dear Rev. Graham: I have a friend who constantly talks about how real God is to her. We attend the same church, but I don’t have the same experience she talks about. When I’ve asked her, she just tells me to read more of the Bible and pray. It hasn’t worked for me, and I wonder if I’m missing something more. — B.P.
Dear B.P.: Think of how a friendship develops between two people. First, they have to be introduced to each other. Then they have to spend time with each other and talk to each other. Without time together, a relationship can never become deeper. This is the same way in our relationship with God. God loves us, and He wants to be our friend in a far deeper way than any human friend.
When we turn to Him and ask Him to come into our lives and free us from sin that besets us, He will forgive and receive us as His own. When that becomes a reality, we must learn of Him and obey Him. How is this done? By reading His Word. This is how God speaks to our hearts. This is how the Lord opens our minds to understanding what He has done for us and what He wants to teach us. Then through prayer, we learn how to open our hearts to Him and pour out our innermost thoughts and concerns.
Jesus said, “I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you” (John 15:15). What a marvelous truth. When we truly love someone, we want to spend time with them. Each day, spend time alone with God. This is how close relationship develops. Even when we may not feel His presence, by faith we know that He is still with us, for He has promised He will never leave us alone (see Hebrews 13:5).
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(This column is based on the words and writings of the late Rev. Billy Graham.)

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