Never Mind the Place!
This is what the Lord says: "Heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool. Where is the house you will build for me? Where will my resting place be?" (Isaiah 66:1)
Some people get so anxious about doing things "properly" in life. Of course, what they often mean is "doing it the way I like it done!" Nowhere is this more unhelpful than in the matter of prayer, for countless people exclude themselves, or are excluded by others, from talking to the Father simply because they think they aren’t doing it "properly" – either in the right place, or at the right time, or in the right way. Over the next three days, we’ll look at each of those.
Concerning where we should pray, the Bible never restricts prayer to "special places." Prayer could be offered anywhere. Why? Because God Himself is everywhere and nowhere is big enough to contain Him or grand enough to be worthy of Him. There is no "proper" place to pray and there is no "better" place to pray. God is everywhere; so everywhere will do.
In fact, the Bible shows us people praying in a tremendously wide variety of places and situations: Daniel prayed at home (Daniel 6:10); Moses prayed up a mountain (Exodus 34:8-9); Elijah prayed while on a journey (1 Kings 19:3-4); Anna prayed in the temple (Luke 2:37); Jesus prayed in the countryside (Mark 1:35); Paul prayed in jail (Acts 16:25) - Jonah even prayed inside a great fish (Jonah 2:1-10)! Whether individually or in groups, whether in public or in private, the Bible makes clear that the location of prayer is completely irrelevant to God. Thoughts that we can only pray "properly" in a church building are completely alien to the Scriptures. What God is after is not the location but the heart.
From bath tub to bus stop, from car to cathedral, there is nowhere that God cannot be found and therefore nowhere that you cannot talk to Him. Don’t put off prayer today because you feel you can’t find the right place or the right moment. The right place is right where you are; the right moment is right now!
I want everyone everywhere to lift innocent hands toward heaven and pray. (1 Timothy 2:8, CEV)
Copyright © 2017 Martin Manser and Mike Beaumont