If God saves humans in order to have a relationship with them, then prayer is less a spiritual discipline that must be exercised, or a ritual that must be performed, or a “spiritual” way to work on our psychological help. Instead, prayer is a vital part of our relationship with him.

Like any relationship, God wants to hear our voice, to know what we’re thinking about, to open ourselves up to him so he can know us. And he also wants us to hear his voice, know what he’s thinking about, and give himself to us in a mutual relationship of commitment and love.

It’s almost a truism that prayer is us talking to God, and the Bible is God talking to us, but the practical import of these twin realities should affect the way we interact with him. Praying without Bible study is going to feel empty; Bible study without prayer is also going to feel empty, simply because any one-sided conversation we have with any person (and God is not less than a Person) is going to stifle that relationship. Listening, responding, listening some more, responding some more – this is the key to any relationship, and our relationship with God is no different. Practically speaking, Aaron encourages us to read the Bible and pray simultaneously – reading and praying back and forth in conversation, listening to his voice, talking to him about what he talks to you about in his Word, reading some more, talking about what’s on your heart. This sort of back-and-forth is key to knowing God and him knowing you.


Aaron Mueller
Chuck Rathert