Prayer is one of the greatest privileges we have as Christians! It is a "life line" that our Father has established that we can communicate with our Him. Even the disciples in the Gospels were asking Jesus (God the Son) how to pray so that they would pray effectively. Sometimes, I believe we are looking for the "magic" combination of words in order to unlock the blessings' floodgate. Or, we can treat God as if He is the giant Santa Claus in the sky or even a genie. However, when you compare the prayers of David in the book of Psalms and the prayer that Jesus taught the disciples, you will find some important similarities: praise/adoration, thankfulness, and then petition followed by more praise.
For me, personally, I tend to jump past the praise part and even the thankfulness, right down to the petition part. So, I want to take the time to publicly praise God for who He is and what He has done in our lives lately. I praise the Lord for His grace in salvation, without it, I am nothing and have no hope! I praise God for His discipline! I wish that I did not need any discipline, but I haven't made it to heaven yet. I'm thankful for my marriage, my wife, and my children!!!! I praise God for His provision for my family! He has met every need and even some wants that I don't deserve! We have a roof over our heads! We have food at our disposal! We have a vehicle that is getting us around with air condition (yes, I know, if we were in Indiana already, we would be using our heat, but here in FL we are still using air condition!)! I praise the Lord for friendships (although I may not be the best friend to those whom He has put in my life, I am thankful for them and desire to be a better friend!)! I praise the Lord for the family He has given me! God's love is incredible! For what Jesus did on the cross, I have no words for, other than "THANK YOU!"
My God knows our needs and I have petitioned Him for them, but ultimately it is the recognition and praise that He desires. Our lives are dependent upon Him for everything! It is the faith that we are always in need of to anticipate that He will do things for His glory!
Dennis Runner- a witness, a follower, a student, and a lump of clay in the hands of my God and Savior.