Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Rejoice The Lord Is King"1 (Lyrics)
Romans 8:26-27 – In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God's will. (NIV)
My two-and-a-half-year-old grandchild, Lindy, loves to sing, even though she doesn't yet speak, other than the odd word here and there. What better place to sing but at church? After all, everyone else is singing, so she loves to join right in. She pulls a book from the hymn rack, opens it to a random page and begins singing along with the congregation. Though she does not utter one intelligible word, her heart expresses the joy of her young soul, and I have no doubt in my mind that God understands every word that no one else does.
Likewise, I often do not have the words to pray. Amidst world chaos due to COVID-19 and war in Ukraine, random violence, extreme climate change disasters, unrest among so many and varied groups of people for one reason or another, and the like, it is hard to know even where to begin in prayer, much less what to say. Yet, there is One Who knows our weakness, and that One is the Holy Spirit: He Who intercedes before the throne of grace for us with groans that words cannot express.
So, even when we do not know what to say or even where to begin, our prayers are never in vain, for God still hears and knows our hearts and listens to our unspoken requests through the Spirit's intercession for us.
Thus, amidst difficult times in our lives, our towns and cities, and our world, let us not neglect to make the time to pray, even if we don't know where to begin. For though our mouths may be silent, He Who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, Who intercedes for the saints in accordance with God's will.
James 5:16b – The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective. (NIV)
Prayer: Lord God, thank You that the Holy Spirit intercedes for us before Your throne of grace when we do not possess or even know the words that we want or ought to pray. Thank You that amidst our weakness, our prayers do not go unheard or unanswered. In Christ's name, we pray. Amen.