And Ezra blessed the LORD, the great God; and all the people answered,
“Amen, Amen,” lifting up their hands;
and they bowed their heads and worshiped the LORD with their faces to the ground.
(Nehemiah 8:6)

This is how to pray! This is how we are to love the LORD, to honor the LORD, to humble ourselves before the LORD.  Sacred Scripture is such an incredible gift from God. (I have said this before, and I repeat it: I do not have the vocabulary to describe how I feel about the gift that is God’s Word to us.)

The prayer and actions of the Jewish people are not physically difficult, they are perhaps difficult for us because we have some pride that prevents us from humbling ourselves like this.  Or maybe it is cowardice that prevents us from praying with our face to the ground.

The Book of Nehemiah takes place about 440 years before Jesus was born and belongs to the “Historical” books of the Old Testament, but it is more than an a story of ancient history. This passage teaches us how to pray (as do many other passages of Scripture).  To pray like this, to worship like this, you will need humility and courage, so first pray that the Holy Spirit will give you both.

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