A few years ago, I came across a diagram of a wheel with four spokes that represented the basics of the Christian life.
The wheel shows four spokes: Prayer, study, service, and community. Two of the spokes – Prayer and study – are vertical and have to do with the relationship between God and us.
The other two spokes – service and community – are horizontal and have to do with the relationship between other people and us.
When all four spokes are in place, our lives are steady and well balanced. When one or more spokes are damaged or missing, we can get out of balance and our life becomes a bumpy ride.
1. The first spoke on the wheel is prayer.
There is a lot of material on how to pray, but in actual fact, prayer is straightforward. Our goal is not “to pray,” or even “to pray well,” but to get to know Jesus and to grow in our personal relationship with Him.
Prayer can be likened to two old friends sitting on a park bench who’ve known each other for 50 years. They absolutely enjoy each other, and they enjoy looking at the park. They don’t feel like they have to say or do anything but are happy just to be together.
It is a matter of loving God and being loved by him, of speaking (if it is a necessity) to God and letting Him speak to us. It’s not so complicated after all.
When God created the world, there was a big bang. From His very being, an explosion of power burst forth of His love and compassion – all that God is. The universe is encompassed by that essence, by that love. Essentially the very air we breathe is filled with God. To experience Him, we need only turn our face towards him and recognise He is there.
“God intended that they would seek Him and perhaps reach out for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us. ‘For in Him we live and move and have our being.’(Acts 17:28)
The basics of our relationship rest in the understanding that God is all around us. When we invite him to share our life, He is in us, and we are in Him.
That friendship motivates us to stay close, not wanting to “Do, say or think anything that would offend Him.”
When you find yourself in confusion, need guidance or feel in a spiritual slump, if you get back to the basics you will find yourself on solid ground again.
"By this, we know that we remain in Him; and He in us” ( 1 John 4:13)
Prayer: Lord, thank you that I can come to you and enjoy being with you. Help me to wait and listen, not to the sound of the outer world, but to the quietness and peace that is found in your love. In Jesus Name Amen.