In the first article, I wrote on definitions on prayer, when prayer starts and some of the components of prayer. While in the second article I finished my brief exegesis on components of prayer. The third article is centered on those who should pray. The fourth is on some of the reasons why talk (pray) to our heavenly father.
I will want us to see some of the places where we can talk to God in this article.
6. Venue of Prayer
Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary defines venue as a place where people meet for an organized event, for example a concert, sporting event or conference. I will want us to see some places where we can meet with God in this article.
(i) Secret Place/Closet
We can meet and talk with God in our closets, as Jesus Christ himself has stated that while talking with his disciples about prayer.
“But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.” (Mt. 6:6)
The Greek word used for closet in in this place is “ταμεῖον”, Romanized form is tameion (pronounced as tam-i'-on) which means chamber (probably the one in the ground floor as or an interior of oriental house which is used for storage or privacy, a spot to be retired into). This is the place that the Lord asks his disciples and those listening to him to restore to when they want to pray.
In Hebrew closet is “חפּה”, Romanized form is chûppâh (pronounced as khoop-paw') which means chamber, defense. (Joe 2:16) This therefore means closet is a place of defense, a place or armory for the military personal, and for the people in this part of the world those of the ancient days, it means place where they used to resort to when enemies wanted to attack them to consult with their gods to give them more power to be able to overcome their enemies.
This is the kind of place that Jehosheba the sister of Ahaziah hid Joash his son from being killed, as it is called the bedchamber, store house, a place that one cannot readily check.
“But Jehosheba, the daughter of king Joram, sister of Ahaziah, took Joash the son of Ahaziah, and stole him from among the king's sons which were slain; and they hid him, even him and his nurse, in the bedchamber from Athaliah, so that he was not slain.” (2 Ki 11:2)
The place where visitors cannot readily check for us when they are seeking for us is the place where the Lord asks us to resort to when we want to pray to avoid distractions.
(ii) Before Others
The scriptures encourage that we can pray before other, our children, our wives and husbands, our parents, our servants and followers.
We know prophet Elijah prayed before peple, Jesus prayed before his followers and parents.
“Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass, that Jesus also being baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened,” (Luk 3:21 see also Luk 9:28-29; 1 Ki 18:42-44; Joh 12:27-28)
This we can do to lay examples for them to be following afterwards.
(iii) On the Mountain
Mountain is an elevated place from the ground. We can also resort to the place to be able to commune with out father without disturbances like some prophets, and Jesus did.
“And it came to pass in those days, that he went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God.” (Lk. 6:12; Ex. 32:1)
(iv) Inside the House
After Jesus ascension to heaven, the disciples gathered in a room to pray unto the Lord. When apostle Peter was in the prison custody, the believers gathered for prayer in the house of Mary the mother of Mark.
“And when he had considered the thing, he came to the house of Mary the mother of John, whose surname was Mark; where many were gathered together praying.” (Acts 12:12; 1:13)
Our houses, our rooms are venue of prayer, we should make the most use of the place to commune with our heavenly father.
(v) Inside the Temple/Church
In the ancient days, in the Old Testament specifically, we shall see that the people were being told to go to the place where God has chosen to put his name to commune with Yahweh there.
“Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican.” (Lk. 18:10)
However, in the new testament days, the ancient methods of temples have been replaced by churches. Inside those places we can talk to God, for they are the places we have set aside to be calling on the name of God.
(vi) Inside Prison
When we are in restrictions, confinements, when we are in custody, we can pray unto God there. I remembered years back when I was on a way to another town for ministration, the driver carrying me was stopped by the police officer and he was harassing him for no cause, then I started defending the cause of a driver, telling the policeman that what he was doing was wrong, but he misconstrued me, and said I am meddling in matter that does not concern me, and the he would show me what he is made up of. He dragged me to the police station, where I was seriously beaten, they did not even listen to what I am saying again and put me in cell. I was unable to go to there I would minister that day.
While in the cell, some other young boys were arrested and brought to the station, for walking at night. Those guys when they were put behind the bars they started shouting and praising the name of the Lord.
Apostle Peter has said what believers should be ashamed of is when we are arrested and suffering for the sins we really committed, but when we are suffering for righteous cause we should be glad, because our savior Jesus Christ also suffered for what he did not do.
“But and if ye suffer for righteousness' sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled;
“For it is better, if the will of God be so, that ye suffer for well doing, than for evil doing.” (1 Pet 3:14 & 17)
When we are defending the cause of the defenseless and the enemies turned that against us, we should count it all joy, knowing that our savior too when he was in the world suffered in like manner and more importantly what we are doing assuming Jesus Christ was alive would he do the same? If your answer is Jesus would do the same, then rejoice, for blessed are ye.
An example that would readily come to our hearts of those prayed while in prison according to the bible account were Paul and Silas.
“And when they had laid many stripes upon them, they cast them into prison, charging the jailor to keep them safely:
“Who, having received such a charge, thrust them into the inner prison, and made their feet fast in the stocks.
“And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them.” (Acts 16:23-25)
Apostle Paul and Silas were apprehended and imprisoned, but they ensured that the chains were no barriers to praying and praising the Lord.
(vii) Inside Vehicles
When we are in vehicles on the road, air, water, rail we shouldn’t see that as barriers to speak to our heavenly father.
“And when he had thus spoken, he took bread, and gave thanks to God in presence of them all: and when he had broken it, he began to eat.” (Acts 27:35)
Apostle Paul was with others heading for Rome, but in the ship that he was he did not cease from talking to God. Deep within us we can be communing with God when we are in our vehicles, in the airplane, ships, train and we should be assured that he will hear us.
(viii) In the farm
The people of Israel have sinned unto the Lord again and he has sole them unto the hands of their enemies, such that those people do not allow them to go to their farms again without taken permission from them. But a man like Gideon was secretly going to the farm to keep things for his family.
While in this farm one day an angel of the Lord appeared unto him, and there they started talking there he tried the Lord, through his petitions.
“And the LORD said unto him, surely I will be with thee, and thou shalt smite the Midianites as one man.
“And he said unto him, If now I have found grace in thy sight, then shew me a sign that thou talkest with me.” (Jdg. 6:16-17)
If you are a farmer and you have believed that you cannot pray until you get to town or church, you should have a rethink, you can make a landslide encounter with your God even when you are in the farm.
(ix) Beneath Water and Inside Animals
We read an intriguing story about a wonderful prophet of God who was sent to go and deliver message to the people of Nineveh, but he wanted to dodge the assignment. God proved too much for him as storm arose to the ship which he board, to save the lives of others he asked that he would be thrown into the sea, and when this was done, the sea became calm.
However, after 2 days in the belly of the big fish beneath the water, he prayed to god from there and Elohim heard him, and he was delivered.
“Then Jonah prayed unto the LORD his God out of the fish's belly,” (Jon 2:1)
I said two days, because I know it was not immediately, he prayed that God spoke to the fish which vomited him upon the dry land. he would have started praying few hours ahead, have repented of mistakes and asking for God’s forgiveness.
(x) In the Wilderness/Desert
Some people in this part of the world because of some sects of people that have been praying on the mountain do not consider wilderness as a place of prayer. But we can see that Jesus Christ when alive also resorted to the wilderness to pray.
“And he withdrew himself into the wilderness, and prayed.” (Lk. 5:16)
When I was an assistant pastor, the commonest venue that I used to take my team to was the wilderness for prayers, because that is easily accessible to us, and there God used to answer our prayers and do mighty and marvelous things in the lives of the brethren.
(xi) Before Unbelievers
We can also pray before those who do not share the same faith with us, like Samson did before the Philistines and prophet Elijah did before the prophets of Baal those days.
“Jdg 16:28 And Samson called unto the LORD, and said, O Lord GOD, remember me, I pray thee, and strengthen me, I pray thee, only this once, O God, that I may be at once avenged of the Philistines for my two eyes.” (Jdg. 16:28; see also 1 Kings 18:35-39)
We have been encouraged by the authors of the bible that we can really pray anywhere we get to in the world, whether in the ocean, on the moon, in the plane, really everywhere is the emphasis, and we shouldn’t limit ourselves. (Ps. 61:2; Lk. 11:1)
“I will therefore that men pray every where, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting.” (1 Ti 2:8)
Do you desire to talk with your father? Then know that there are no restrictions to you to talking to him where you are now, and he will surely hear you.
Having known where we can pray, it would be an added knowledge to knowing when men can pray, thence, my next article shall be centered on when can men pray.
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