May 23, 2021 |Talking With God

Private Prayer In The Presence Of God

05.23.21 | Talking With God

Private Prayer In The Presence Of God

Justin Detmers

Psalm 16:5-11

It’s common to seek out God for what He gives, rather than seeking Him for Himself. How do you view your personal prayer? Pastor Justin Detmers shares that private prayer is not ultimately about the requests of the individual; it’s about being in the presence of God. We, as children of God, should never hesitate to rush into His presence.

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Private prayer is not ultimately about the requests of the individual; it's about being in the presence of God.

Lord, you are my portion
and my cup of blessing;
you hold my future.
The boundary lines have fallen for me
in pleasant places;
indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance.
I will bless the Lord who counsels me—
even at night when my thoughts trouble me.
I always let the Lord guide me.
Because he is at my right hand,
I will not be shaken.
Therefore my heart is glad
and my whole being rejoices;
my body also rests securely.
For you will not abandon me to Sheol;
you will not allow your faithful one to see decay.
You reveal the path of life to me;
in your presence is abundant joy;
at your right hand are eternal pleasures.
Psalm 16:5-11
Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.
Mark 1:35, NIV
After dismissing the crowds, he went up on the mountain by himself to pray. Well into the night, he was there alone.
Matthew 14:23
“Whenever you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites, because they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by people. Truly I tell you, they have their reward. But when you pray, go into your private room, shut your door, and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you. When you pray, don’t babble like the Gentiles, since they imagine they’ll be heard for their many words. Don’t be like them, because your Father knows the things you need before you ask him.
Matthew 6:5-8

The essence of prayer is the communion of the disciple with his Father. - RT France

Seek the Lord and his strength;
seek his presence continually!
1 Chronicles 16:11, ESV

With our loss of the sense of majesty has come the further loss of religious awe and consciousness of the divine Presence. We have lost our spirit of worship and our ability to withdraw inwardly to meet God in adoring silence. Modern Christianity is simply not producing the kind of Christian who can appreciate or experience life in the Spirit. The words, “Be still, and know that I am God,” mean next to nothing to the self-confident, bustling worshipper... The only way to recoup our spiritual losses is to go back to the cause of them and make such corrections as the truth warrants. The decline of the knowledge of the holy has brought on our troubles. A rediscovery of the majesty of God will go a long way toward curing them. It is
impossible to keep our moral practices sound and our inward attitudes right while our idea of God is erroneous or inadequate. If we would bring back spiritual power to our lives, we must begin to think of God more nearly as He is.
- AW Tozer

    • To Practice being in the presence of God:


    Make time for solitude and concentration

But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.
Luke 5:16, NIV
Be still, and know that I am God.
Psalm 46:10, ESV

    • To Practice being in the presence of God:


    • Make time for solitude and concentration


    • Focus on God and His attributes


    • Pray to your Father


    Receive Jesus

How would you assess the health of your private prayer life? Does your prayer life often include solitude and undivided attention so that you can focus on God?

When you pray, what are you usually seeking out? (e.g. help/protection, blessing, forgiveness, & the salvation of others?) Do you typically desire to be in the presence of God, or to just receive the blessings and help He provides?

Read Psalm 16:5-11 and notice how David’s words center around God. What specific things (about God) does he focus on and how do these items cause him to rejoice?

Considering Jesus’ own example (e.g. Luke 5:16, Matthew 14:23), what comes to mind when you think about practically coming into the presence of God?

What in your life is currently preventing you from spending regular times of prayer in the presence of God?