After over 30+ years of being a Christian, many aspects of prayer remains a mystery to me.

And here is something new I learned about prayer this week.

I notice I was feeling a lack of motivation in life. I wondered what I am living for. I was losing focus on projects that I was really excited about. I was irritable. I was feeling discontent. Is it PMS? Is it mid-life crisis?

I was yearning for something and I didn’t know what it was.

Then one night, I sat on my bed and prayed.

As I prayed, ahhh…I felt a thirst being quenched…and yet I was still thirsty.

It dawned on me that what I was experiencing the last few weeks was the result of a lack of prayer. For the last few weeks, I didn’t have time haven’t made the time to spend with God in prayer.

Honestly, when I don’t pray, nothing really goes wrong. I can still handle everything in my life. I still work, take care of my family, do my church stuff. The outward does not change.

But my inside, I suppose it must be my spirit, knows the difference.

And the interesting thing is, it wasn’t that I didn’t pray about my life goals and therefore I lacked direction and motivation. Merely a general prayerlessness leads to a sense of incompleteness, a lack of mission.

Jesus said, “I am the vine, you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” (John 15)

What do you mean, Jesus, that apart from you I can do nothing?

People can accomplish a lot without abiding in Christ.

But now I have experienced that life loses something when I do not abide in Christ. I could accomplish things, but its not the same without Christ. In some mysterious connection that I don’t understand, prayer and abiding in Christ gave me an energy, a perspective, a different outlook on life that makes all the difference.

Perhaps I felt like a carpenter working on a house, doing my part of making the cabinets. Without conferring with the foreman, I would still know how to make the cabinets. But consistently talking to the foreman would show me how my cabinets fit in with the rest of the mansion we were building. I would be more motivated, I could get specific directions, I could ask for help from someone more knowledgeable than me, I would simply enjoy my job more with someone directing me and keeping me company.

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