Many years ago I regularly attended an old-fashioned Baptist prayer meeting. One of the people there, slightly older than myself, did not pray out loud on one occasion that sticks in my memory. A comment was made to her about it. She said she did not feel like praying. That started quite a flurry of comments. She held her ground, and refused to pray words out loud despite pressure to conform to the group’s definition of prayer.

In my thoughts “Time to Pray” the seed was planted about how to define prayer. A step further takes us to the question, “How do I pray without spoken words?”

In the privacy of your own mind and thoughts what kind of “prayers” are you sending up? Emotions that rise up in you when you think of certain people, or certain events or certain unfulfilled dreams (both good goals and sinful desires) send real signals. God hears the messages you think and feel  as clearly as if on a cloudless day beside a serene lake.

Jesus said, “It’s what comes out of a person that makes [them] unclean. Evil thoughts, sexual sins, stealing, murder, adultery, greed, wickedness, cheating, shameless lust, envy, cursing, arrogance, and foolishness come from within a person. All these evils come from within and make a person unclean” (Mark 7:20-23 God’s Word, see also Matthew 15:11).

What about people you don’t like (whether they have offended you or corrected you)? Your disrespect, contempt, jealousy, or critical attitude actually mean you are praying against someone? When you pray against someone who follows God’s plan with steps of faith you pray against the God who directs their way!

But, no, you wouldn’t do such a thing. What front do you put up to hide your negative spirit? Over the years I have met people who strut around claiming closeness to Jesus and authority, but stab anybody in the back who disagrees. Their expertise with gossip counts as part of the community’s opinion of them. That example only adds to a list of many such attitudes.

God hears thoughts. God receives the emotions you cultivate.

Because of the gift that God has given I can sense when these waves of negativity roll at me. Often I am allowed to know the identity of the source. Sometimes I know people do not grasp that their evil thoughts and violent emotions have wings. At other times the malice deliberately flows from them.

God is Spirit. Our deep desires have existence in the spiritual realm. God sees, knows and suffers from our inner evil. You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but “Make no mistake about this: You can never make a fool out of God. Whatever you plant is what you’ll harvest. If you plant in {the soil of} your corrupt nature, you will harvest destruction. But if you plant in {the soil of} your spiritual nature, you will harvest everlasting life. We can’t allow ourselves to get tired of living the right way…” (Galatians 6:7-9 God’s Word).

Nurture a loving soul. Feed your mind with wholesome foods. Never fall into the arrogance that you can’t sin, or that your thoughts mean nothing to anyone else. And with the Psalmist pray, “Who can notice every mistake? Forgive my hidden faults. Keep me from sinning. Do not let anyone gain control over me. Then I will be blameless, and I will be free from any great offense.  May the words from my mouth and the thoughts from my [mind] be acceptable to you, O Lord, my rock and my defender” (Psalms 19:12-14 God’s Word).