I will be glad and rejoice in Thee: I will sing praise to Thy name, O Thou Most High. – Psalm 9:2
I believe it is the experience of many who love secret devotion that at times they cannot pray, for their heart seems hard, cold, dumb, and almost dead. Do not pump up unwilling and formal prayer, my brethren; but take down the hymn-book and sing. While you praise the Lord for what you have, you will find your rocky heart begin to dissolve and flow in rivers. You will be encouraged to plead with the Lord because you will remember what you have aforetime received at His hand. If you had an empty wagon to raise to the mouth of a coal-pit, it might be a very difficult task for you; but the work is managed easily by the common-sense of the miners. They make the full wagons, as they run down, pull the empty wagons up the incline. Now, when your heart is loaded with praise for mercy received, let it run down the incline, and draw up the empty wagon of your desires, and you will thus find it easy to pray. Cold and chill prayers are always to be deplored, and if by so simple a method as entreating the Lord to accept our thanksgiving our hearts can be warmed and renewed, let us by all means take care to use it.
Lastly, I believe that when a man begins to pray with thanksgiving he is upon the eve of receiving the blessing. God’s time to bless you has come when you begin to praise Him as well as pray to Him. God has His set time to favour us, and He will not grant us our desire until the due season has arrived. But the time has come when you begin to bless the Lord. ~ C.H. Spurgeon