The Groaning of the Spirit
Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God. (Romans 8:26-27)
It is not always easy to admit our weaknesses, but the advantages far outweigh the disadvantages. It is only through the realization of our weakness that we are likely to rely on the Holy Spirt, who is the Divine Helper. It is true that weaknesses are the doorway to strength (2 Corinthians 12:7-10).
Here we see a specific weakness that we all share, which is weakness in prayer. We are stumped concerning the how of prayer, and often about the content of our prayers. We even struggle with the motivation to pray.
Thankfully, the Holy Spirit is able and willing to give us what we need so our prayers will be heard, and thus be effective (1 John 5:14-15).
His groanings (sighing) cannot be uttered; that is, they cannot be spoken in words that we understand. Our part is to believe God … to believe Him that the Spirit is praying this way as He intercedes for us.
The Father is searching our hearts for the prayers of the Spirit, and He knows the Spirit’s purpose in His groanings. The Spirit’s prayers are always spot on. Our part is to just flow with it, to believe the Spirit is helping us, and to trust the outcome of the Spirit’s intercession.
Through it all, we become better pray-ers as we trust God in our weaknesses.
For Further Review
1. Think about some of the difficulties or struggles you have had in your own prayer life. How have you dealt with them? What have you learned?
2. In your own words, describe the meaning and experience of the Holy Spirit making intercession with groanings which cannot be uttered.
3. Take some time right now to ask God to help you in your weakness in prayer, and then make it a point to specifically trust the Holy Spirit to be the answer to that prayer.
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