"And He said to them, 'This kind cannot be driven out by anything but prayer [and fasting]'" (Mark 9:29).
"You look so nice today." "Have you lost weight?" "I was just thinking about you." "Yes, I will be praying for you." Ever said any of those things? Sure you have. We all have. But the BIG question is, have you ever said those when they weren't necessarily exact, accurate, or even true? Again, I'm sure we all have. Christian or not, after a while, we begin to know how certain words affect certain circumstances. We see this in homes with parents and children. It's easily seen at the workplace between bosses and employees. It's even seen in churches and within our relationship with God. Though not always intentional, we sometimes resort to going through the motions, saying the right words, because we've gotten used to them.
Jesus addressed this to His disciples concerning the power of prayer and fasting. A man had brought his son to the disciples to be healed. The boy had been greatly attacked by an evil spirit, yet the prayers of the disciples seemed inadequate. The "right"words aren't enough. The "right" motions aren't going to be enough either. He was telling them that they had to be totally emptied, completely broken, and absolutely surrendered in order to see that kind of power. Why? Because it would be the only way they couldn't take the credit.
Take a look at your life right now. How's your relationship with God who loves you so much? Have you gotten used to the routines, the ceremonies, the liturgies, and the like? Not that any of these things are bad in and of themselves. But, has it become a ritual over a relationship? I am so determined to see more of Jesus in Me! But, I have to purpose each moment of each day to be totally emptied, completely broken, and absolutely surrendered to Him. For HE deserves all the glory.