Let my prayer be set forth as incense before You, the lifting of my hands as the evening sacrifice. (Psalm 141:2 AMP)
Both incense and the evening sacrifice have a wonderful aroma to God. In a human the center for smell is most closely attached to the emotions. Smelling Grandma’s vegetable soup cooking or her pork chops can remain in our memory and we come back to it at a similar aroma. So when we pray and when we lift up our hands in honor of him and humility before him we have found the way to God and His deepest emotions and it remains within His heart.
There are times in prayer that I am moved to lift my hands before him. But that is rare. Often it is when I hear music that my mouth can’t sing because I am so touched by him. That is when I feel I should offer my humble lack of words and allow him to move within me by raising my hands. This too happens less and less frequently. I need to take the initiative to worship more.
The reason we pray is to get an answer and the reason we lift our hands is to express honor. But to God the reason we pray is to draw closer to Him. The reason we lift our hands is to live and move within his heart. Relationship matters to him as much as the answer to our prayers and the honor and humility we show. That’s why the incense and the evening sacrifice.