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One of the descriptions for the Holy Spirit is “the Helper” (see John 14:26). As believers, we desperately need the help and empowerment of the Spirit, and one of the areas that He helps us is in our prayer lives. Below is an excerpt from Living From the Secret Place that describes some of the ways that the Holy Spirit helps us to pray.
The Holy Spirit Helps us to Pray
Before we close out this chapter, I want to focus on the reality of the Holy Spirit as One who helps us in prayer. Paul describes this clearly in Romans 8:26-27 (ESV):
Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.
There are thousands of situations or people that we could pray for, but the Holy Spirit can help lead us to pray what is on the heart of God for the moment. He may prompt us to intercede for an individual by placing the person on our heart or mind. He may give us an intense burden to pray for someone so that we enter into deep intercession for them. When the Holy Spirit helps us to pray, sometimes it also comes with groanings or travail, deep cries, and tears. Don’t be alarmed or shy away if this happens to you in times of prayer.
If you pray in tongues, this is also a way that the Holy Spirit can help you intercede. Even though our mind doesn’t understand what is being said, we can know that we are praying according to the will of God. I have found praying in tongues to be a powerful form of prayer, and the Lord has led me to increase this practice significantly over the last several years. If you haven’t received this gift, I encourage you to seek God for it. If you already have it, I encourage you to use it on a consistent basis in your secret place times and throughout the day.
In referencing the Spirit’s help in our prayers, I am not suggesting that all prayer must be spontaneously led. On the contrary, it is great to have people or situations that you bring before the Lord on a regular basis or a list of requests that you frequently pray through. But be open to how the Holy Spirit might lead you in your times of prayer and flexible to follow His guidance. Just as Jesus taught His disciples to pray, so the Holy Spirit will teach you.
Dig into the Word on this subject and trust that the Lord will lead and empower you in prayer. An active prayer life is a sign of humility and hunger. It says, “God, I need you” and “God, I want You.” As you grow in this area, prayer will be a vital part of your walk with the Lord and a catalyst for advancing His kingdom.
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Time alone with God was never intended to be a boring duty or empty ritual. It was meant to be a passionate pursuit of God that leads to encountering His presence and knowing Him more.
Living from the Secret Place is a call to personal devotion. With rich scriptural truths, personal examples, and practical teaching, this book will equip you to grow in the most important thing you can do—spend time alone with God!