And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him. —Matthew 6:7-8 NIV

It’s early evening, and almost time for my weekly group of praying grandmothers to gather at my house for prayer. Although normally we’re quite the crowd, this week no one has yet arrived. Most of them have written to tell me they won’t be coming due to travel or illness or husbands who need them. I feel guilty at my relief. I love my group, and I love our time of concentrated prayer. But tonight I am tired. I’d really rather just do a few chores and go to bed.

But then … a car pulls up. An equally tired grandmother enters my home. She’s worked a full day at a local high school helping a handicapped student, but here she is, out on a cold and rainy evening in March, ready to pray despite her weariness. And so we do.

We pray tired.

We praise our God and thank Him, and then we bring the needs of our grandchildren before Him. We aren’t loud or even particularly fervent. But our hearts are still united in love for our dear ones and in awe of the One who hears us. Even though we are weary. Even though we are not all that eloquent. Even though we are tired.

This experience made me stop for a moment and ponder prayer. I sometimes forget that prayer is not about me or how profound or passionate I am as I speak my words aloud. No. Prayer is a simple turning of my little heart and soul to the One who hears even my groanings and wants to help me just because I ask Him. I don’t have to muster up eloquence or impressive zeal. I can simply come to Him in my need. Several places in the Bible make this clear:

In Jesus’ parable of the Pharisee and the tax collector who both prayed, it wasn’t the Pharisee with his fancy words who went home justified. No. It was the humble tax collector who was praised. “‘But the tax collector stood at a distance and dared not even lift his eyes to heaven as he prayed. Instead, he beat his chest in sorrow, saying, “O God, be merciful to me, for I am a sinner.” I tell you, this sinner, not the Pharisee, returned home justified before God …’” (Luke 18:13-14a NLT).

In our key verse for this blog, Jesus also encourages us to keep it simple. I don’t need to babble on and on. You see, the power in prayer comes not from me and the way I “do” it. The power comes from the One to whom I am speaking. I can pray tired and be confident I am heard. My God knows me. He loves me. He is eager to hear from His tired child.

In Matthew 11:28, Jesus tells all of us to come to Him exactly as we are, “weary and heavy laden,” and He will give us rest.

My friend and I finished our prayer time with tears in our eyes. God was with us, and we knew it. He came to two tired grandmothers and heard our simple petitions. We felt such a strong sense of His Spirit and His pleasure, despite our lack of fire and energy. Don’t let the enemy guilt you into thinking you have to rev up a fervor every time you pray. Just come to God. Pray when you are full of energy and pray when you are tired. He’s waiting to hear from you. All the time.

Father, thank You for that precious memory of praying tired. Help me to always come to You. I am so grateful the power in prayer rests with You and not in my efforts. I am so thankful You welcome us when we are not eloquent or passionate, even when we are very weary. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

You are loved,




Sweet Selah Ministries

To inspire a movement away from the belief that “busy is better”
and toward the truth of God’s Word that stillness and knowing
Him matter most—and will be reflected in more effective work and service

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and love God more deeply as they know Him more intimately (Sweet)

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11 Comments. Leave new

  • Joyce Lee Parker
    May 23, 2022 12:25 pm

    I love your moments with God, you are a great teacher and I’m glad that I can pray when I feel down and
    out. Sometimes I pray better when I’m exhausted because I take my time. I love you Lord and Love these
    women who teach about you. They are wonderful and are necessary for me to hear. Thank you Lord
    Jesus, make me always more attentive to you and to them. This is where I learn the most.

    • Sharon Gamble
      May 23, 2022 1:14 pm

      Dear Joyce, I love your prayer “make me always more attentive to you …” AMEN. I want that, too. To be attentive to the Lord who is always there and willing to speak truth and comfort to us. Thanks for your encouragement this morning.

    • Karen Miller
      June 22, 2022 12:57 am

      I agree with you, Ms. Joyce – could not have said it better.

  • Donna Perkins
    May 23, 2022 1:16 pm

    I love this Sharon! I often think about how I talk things over with my Ralph…energized in the middle of the day, exhausted in the Even and bleary eyed in the morning. Sometimes I speak well while other times he has to read between the lines and yawns; the same with him to me. I’m always reminded that God loved my talk time with Him even more than Ralph and I do with each other and how I say it beats little but the time means everything.

    • Sharon Gamble
      May 23, 2022 1:23 pm

      Exactly, Donna. He loves us and wants us to come to Him. That’s the best. Giving Him our time – the bleary-eyed time and the energized times.

  • Candie Remick
    May 23, 2022 3:25 pm

    This is an awesome reminder, Sharon that it doesn’t matter to
    our gracious God, when, where or how we pray. I know that
    what matters to Him is that we are praying with a loving
    and sincere heart.

    • Sharon Gamble
      May 23, 2022 3:54 pm

      I am so glad we don’t have to sound profound and vibrant all the time with God. He loves us even when we sound weak and tired! Thanks for the encouragement, Candie.

    May 23, 2022 10:15 pm

    Thanks as always for your thoughts, so true. It is OK to be simple and tired and just”have a chat” with God. I often pray on my knees, as I learned to do that as a child. It helps with concentration. I have to admit that I once fell asleep, on my knees. And woke up with such a surprise, how could I fall asleep praying? Actually, what a lovely way to fall asleep! Thanks for these thoughts on prayer.

    • Sharon Gamble
      May 23, 2022 10:32 pm

      Oh you made me laugh! Actually, what a lovely way to fall asleep indeed. Thanks for your encouragement. I love that we can come to Him in all moods/emotions/states of well-being!

      • Karen Miller
        June 22, 2022 1:02 am

        I got a chuckle out of Margaret’s comment about falling asleep. It’s happened to me as well as when I’ve read my bible. He knows our hearts – so glad He’s there when we sometimes “aren’t”.

  • Karen Miller
    June 22, 2022 1:03 am

    I got a chuckle out of Margaret’s comment about falling asleep. It’s happened to me as well as when I’ve read my bible. He knows our hearts – so glad He’s there when we sometimes “aren’t”.


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