PRAY EARNESTLY, NOT TO IMPRESS
Matthew 6:5 And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full.
“Games without fans were dull, gloomy and not as exciting”- that is a personal assertion from those matches that took place during strict lockdowns across nearly all sporting events. Lockdowns clearly showed us the difference the absenc of an audience makes to the performance of a team. Whether this effect is a positive or a negative, a crowd in a sporting event does make a difference.
It can offer great encouragement to their fans and also serve as a source of intimidation or even be fear-inducing for opponents. There are, therefore, some situations where one needs an audience to persist. Unfortunately, many seem to have added spiritual activities such as prayer, fasting and giving of alms to that list.
Jesus called that a big No No! He is emphatic and explicit in His words ‘the audience of our spirituality, particularly our prayer, is not man – it is God. And we pray to petition Him, not to impress Him’. What moves his heart is not the verbosity of our words or the accuracy of our expressions. It is neither the succinct pronunciation or poetic arrangement of our words, it is the heart with which we get on our knees.
Therefore, our only audience and focus should be God once our knees hit the floor, bearing in mind that we did not approach Him to show off, but to petition the corridors of El-Shaddai for help in time of need.