READ : Psalm 95:1-7
Let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker! (v. 6)
Prayer is never purely a private affair. To a superficial observer it may look as though we are closing in on ourselves when we pray in solitude. But the truth is just the opposite. Prayer brings us into contact with God. Far from being alone, we enter communion with the One who is the Source of all. We communicate with the One in whose love we have been created.
Communion with God also brings us into oneness with all that the Creator has made. Prayer brings us into community. In prayer we enter a close relationship with God, drawing us into communion with all people and all creation.
Like Jesus, we need times of solitude—just being with our heavenly Father. Out of that relationship we enter into corporate prayer as a community of faith. We are members of the body of Christ. Our prayers, as Jesus taught, are addressed to our Father. We pray for our daily bread and we ask God to forgive us. When we pray we are interceding for all of God’s people.
John Calvin said that in solitary prayer we are formed for expression of prayer with others. Prayer in secret equips us for prayer in community.
Holy God, thank you for the gifts of personal and corporate prayer. Amen.