And when you pray, you shall not be like the hypocrites. For they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the corners of the streets, that they may be seen by men. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward. But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly. And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words (Matt 6:5-7)…..
Religious prayers focus on a response from man, trying impress with long drawn out performances displaying skills of speaking and stirring up the crowd with volume and theatrics and earning the applause of those in earshot. Your reward will be just that – being placed in some light of greatness by those you stand in front of. They will be impressed… and you will be popular – great job… but in whose eyes? What impact does that prayer really have? Are you spending so much time making an impact on those that hear your religion that you become silent to the one that HEARS you in relationship?
Relationship Prayers focus on a response from God. The length of your public prayer also exposes the brevity of your private prayer. You spend SO much energy on praying in front of people that you sometimes don’t even GET to that place in the Spirit with God. And God is NOT impressed by your command of language or your lengthy dissertations of memorized verses and traditions. They don’t move Him. He wants to hear from YOU – Not your speech. He sees what’s really going on with you, He wants a relationship with you and wants to deal with your “deep down on the inside” – those things that you would not dare pray in your religious circle because THAT’s not something you’d want others to know about you! That’s likely what you want God to deal with anyway; so Commit to the relationship with the one that sees the truth and can deal with it and you!
The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much (James 5:16)