Prayer Tip: Helplessness Acknowledged by Prayer

Matthew 5:3 Blessed are the poor (ptochos – utterly helpless and destitute, no hope apart from a handout) in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Jesus says we are blessed if we recognize and acknowledge our true condition of helplessness because then we will cry out to Him for help and rely on Him in our neediness.

Jerry Bridges in his book The Discipline of Grace says, “Prayer is the tangible expression of our dependence (on Christ).  We may think we’re dependent on Christ, but if our prayer life is meager or perfunctory, we thereby deny it.  We’re in effect saying we can handle our spiritual life through self-discipline and our innate goodness.  Or perhaps we’re not even committed to the pursuit of holiness.”

C.S. Lewis understood this when he said, “I pray because I can’t help myself. I pray because I’m helpless. I pray because the need flows out of me all the time – waking and sleeping. It doesn’t change God – it changes me.”

When you are faced with a challenge, a problem, a need, whatever its size and nature, is your first thought to pray or does that tend to come after you’ve tried ‘everything else’?

May God continue to change us today to be a people who pray.

For more information on the Grace Bible Church Prayer Team, visit
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One thought on “Prayer Tip: Helplessness Acknowledged by Prayer

  1. I love the emphasis of dependency illustrated by Mr. Bridges, combined with the illustration of weakness Lewis explains. I find myself in a continual state of need for humility. Reading this reminds me of Isaiah Chapter 6. When presented with the sheer all-encompassing awesomeness of God’s power and majesty, I am helpless before Him. I beg in prayer for mercy and salvation. My plea, therefore, is to live in a constant state of reverence and submission, repentance and confession. I have found no greater freedom than when I am in total servitude to God.

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