All of our pursuits are futile until we have set our hearts resolutely to know and enjoy a growing personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ. Our hearts cannot want the satisfactions and comforts of the world mare than we want peace with God. When our hearts are divided between God and the world, even our prayer lives can bring no sense of contentment.
Sister Teresa of Avila, a saintly woman of prayer from the 16th century recognized this and wrote of the impact it has on prayer.
“During all that time (the time of pursuing satisfaction in something other than Christ), I had still the courage to pray. I say courage, because I know nothing in the whole world that requires greater courage than plotting treason against the King, knowing that He knows it, and yet continuing to frequent His presence in prayer. I spent more than eighteen years in that miserable condition, attempting to reconcile God and my life of sin.”
For many followers of Christ in modern times, the pull of the world is so great, and our hearts and minds so easily fooled, that we hardly recognize that we are just “saying our prayers” when we think we are praying! Until our hearts are resolved to follow Him out of sin and impurity into righteousness and holiness, we will simply be attempting the impossible. Only God can make a heart ready to pray and seek Him wholly! What a penetrating call for holy people to approach a holy God with our whole hearts so that we can be wholly satisfied in Him!