Prayer is air to the passionate Christ-follower. In their book Living What You Believe, Kenneth Boa and William Kruidenier put it this way, “If we follow the general rule that a person can survive forty days without food, four days without water, but only four minutes without oxygen, then we might conclude that oxygen is the most important.” Prayer is oxygen to our souls. “In Him we live and move and exist.” (Acts 17:28).
If we do not breathe, we die. And if we do not pray, we die. Of course, it is a slow, often unnoticeable death of the spiritual fire in our soul, but it is death nonetheless. One commentator has said that a part of Jesus’ agony in the garden before His death was the knowledge that in His humanity He would not be in communion with the Father for a time as He bore our griefs and carried our sorrows. That may or may not be correct but the Scriptures do teach that Jesus made prayer His top priority in life. How important was prayer to him? Well, He prayed:
at His baptism
all night before choosing His 12 disciples
to give thanks to the Father before feeding 4000
at the Transfiguration
before raising Lazarus from the dead
for little children
for Peter’s faith
for Himself, His disciples, and all believers just before heading to Gethsemane
on the cross
Christians should ignite a passion to follow Jesus, and we must prioritize prayer as Jesus did or our passion will die. If our passion dies, we cannot ignite it in someone else. There is no passion to follow Jesus without the priority of prayer. Prayer is the Christ-follower’s air.