Joe McKeever: The Most Overlooked Part of Funerals and Church Services is Prayer

“Pray without ceasing” (I Thessalonians 5:17).

Not long ago, my wife and I attended the funeral of a distant in-law kind of relative. We enjoyed meeting friends and making new ones, and were blessed by the service. It was all great except for one thing.

Something big was missing.

Not a single prayer was uttered. Not the first one.

One wonders if the leaders remembered later and said something like, “Oh my—I forgot to pray.”

It would appear that a lot of people are forgetting to pray these days. We should find that extremely disturbing. And more than a little revealing.

I’ve been in worship services where the first prayer offered was midway through the service and just before the offering.

Nothing tells the tale on us more than the place we give to prayer, whether personally or in the worship services.

Our Lord said, “It is written, ‘My house shall be a house of prayer for all the nations…’” (Mark 11:17, quoting Isaiah 56:7 and Jeremiah 7:11 ).  

God wants prayer to take place when His people gather.

The fact that we could assemble and forget to pray says a hundred things about us, all of them bad.

–We are satisfied living in the flesh and not in the Spirit.

–We see no reason to call on the Father, whether for His presence and blessings, or for His wisdom and anointing. We are like the newly-shorn Samson who awakened and “did not know the Spirit had departed from him” (Judges 16:20). What could be more condemning than this?

We do not hunger for His nearness, long for His comfort, ache for Him to convict the lost and draw them to Christ.

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Source: Church Leaders