Friday, April 24, 2009

Prayer Begins in the Kitchen

Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers.

1 Peter 3:7

How does the way I treat my wife have an impact on my prayers? Many books have been and still could be written about that question. If I don’t treat my wife with consideration and respect my prayers will be hindered. But how and why does that happen?

There was a character in the very old television series “Leave it to Beaver” who is best remembered for his hypocrisy. Eddie Haskell presented himself to Beaver’s parents as the ideally responsible kid. He was not. Frankly, I can still feel some of the negative emotions I had about Eddie Haskell.

When I come “boldly before the throne” with prayers of praise and petition pretending that I am something that I am not, my prayers are hindered. How do you respond when someone tells you a lie and you know for sure that they are lying? Do you listen to and consider the story or request, or do you dismiss the whole communication?

When you talk to God it is impossible to lie and succeed in that lie. It’s like the two year old who is caught with his hand in the cookie jar and yet boldly proclaims “I didn’t do it!”

The problem of hindered prayer is not just for married men, but husbands are notorious for pretending that they treat their wives with consideration and respect when they don’t.

So if you are a husband and want to improve your prayer life there are many good suggestions about a special place, a regular time, using a prayer list, etc. etc. If however I am not considerate of my wife and don’t respect her I come into the presence of the Lord already disqualified to plead my case.

Husbands who want to work on their prayer life should start with cleaning up the kitchen, listening intently to his wife’s concerns, and looking for every opportunity to show her respect. When I do that my prayer life will definitely improve!

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