When You Don't Know What to Pray

"And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever." - John 14:16

Today's devotion is adapted from a recent post on Pastor Greg's blog. To read his latest blog entry, click here.

There are times when we don't really know what or how to pray.

Maybe you are overwhelmed by a burden. You find yourself discouraged, depressed, and overwhelmed. It is at that point that the Holy Spirit will help you.

Jesus referred to the Holy Spirit as a "comforter." In John 14:16, He said, "And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you forever" (KJV).

The Comforter

We have lost the meaning of the word "comforter." It comes from the Greek word Paracletos, which means "called alongside to help," a helper, aide, or assistant.

Some versions translate Paracletos as the word "advocate," which is applied to Jesus in 1 John 2:1: "If anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the Righteous."

The purpose of an advocate is to plead the cause of another, an intercessor. This is part of the work that the Holy Spirit has come to do in your life.

Sometimes a sigh will do

Why? Because we don't always have to put words to our prayers.

Here's the good news–sometimes just a sigh or groan will do. The Holy Spirit will do the rest.

Trust me, I have done this many times, especially recently. I don't know what to say, or how to say it. I just know that I am in pain, so I sigh, I groan, and sometimes I cry.

That's where the Holy Spirit comes in. As Romans 8:26-27 tells us, "Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God."

Copyright © 2009 by Harvest Ministries. All rights reserved.

Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000

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