Why Should We Pray?

Every religion has prayer as a part of its ritual. However, in Christianity, prayer is much more than simply a ritual. The problem is, that for many people, prayer is used only as a part of the ritual that they recite every Sunday Morning or before you eat. The truth is that true prayer is not a ritual and should never be used that way. In Christianity, prayer is our means for communicating with God.

Prayer Is Our Means For Communicating With God

Many people try to communicate with God through a ritual. This way, they can feel that they have been with God without actually getting very close to Him. Ritual is a means to ease our conscience. It helps us to feel like we have “done our duty” with God.

However, prayer is for the purpose with actually communicating with God. This is why God created us in the first place, so that we could communicate with Him. He wanted a creature that could and would share His great love. We do this through prayer.

So, remember this. Prayer is not a ritual that we perform. Prayer is a means of communicating with God, just as speaking with another person is a means of communicating with that person. We cannot communicate with God by giving Him a speech, just like we cannot communicate with another person simply by giving a speech to him. Speech is a one way street. Communication is a two-way street. Communication means listening as well as speaking.

Prayer Is Our Means For Touching God

The story is told in Luke 8 about a woman who wanted Jesus to heal her. She felt that if she could only touch Jesus, that would be enough to be healed. Thus, in a crowded street, she got close enough to simply touch Him.

When she did this, Luke 8:45-46 records (NIV): “’Who touched me?’ Jesus asked. When they all denied it, Peter said, ‘Master, the people are crowding and pressing against you.’ But Jesus said, ‘Someone touched me; I know that power has gone out from me.’” You see, she was not performing a ritual. She was trying to touch Jesus so that she could receive something from Him. She was trying to communicate with Jesus.

When we touch God through prayer, we are accessing God’s power. It is impossible for us to accomplish what God needs for us to accomplish, either in the world or even in our own lives, without accessing His power. When we touch God through prayer, we access the power we need to accomplish what we need to do.

Prayer Enables Us To Understand God’s Plan

One of the most important things to understand about prayer is that it is not trying to change God’s mind. Rather, it is learning to understand God’s plan for us.

Yes, I know that there is a time and place for trying to get God to do what we think should be done. Moses did this in the desert when He changed God’s mind about destroying the Israelite nation and starting over with a new people. Read Exodus 32:7-14. Notice that Moses was not trying to change God’s mind about himself, but rather to change His mind about destroying Israel. This is a specialized use of prayer.

We can also use prayer to enable God to work in the life of another person. God will not force His will on anyone. He has given us free will and will never go against it. However, He will listen to His children and will try to influence someone’s life when we ask Him to do it.

Prayer Is To Get To Know God’s Will For Us.

This is the most important use of prayer. There are two ways to know the will of another person. The first is to read what the person gives us in writing. God has done this through His Holy Word, our Bible. But this will only reveal God’s general plan for His people which includes His general will for us personally.

The other way to know the will of another person is to talk with that person personally. This does not mean reciting a formal prayer. This is like giving a speech to God. The only way that we can know God’s will for us personally is to talk with Him. That is, ask Him questions and listen for an answer.

Sometimes, God will speak to us in an audible voice. But this is actually very rare. Often, He will simply put a thought into our mind, usually something that we have not thought about before. Other times, He will lead us to a Scripture verse. When He does this, He is saying: “This verse if for you personally. Follow it and you will get your answer.”

Prayer Is Giving God Access To Our Need

When we pray, we are acknowledging that we need God in our lives. Through prayer, we are opening the door, giving God access to our needs and permitting Him to exercise His own power in dealing with our needs. We are telling God that we need Him.

Why is this important? Listen to what God says to the church in Laodicea. Rev. 3:15-17 (NIV): “I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm–neither hot nor cold–I am about to spit you out of my mouth. You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked.”

God is saying: “If you do not need me, I have no need of you.” We cannot expect to find our way into heaven if we have no need of God while we are here on the earth. Our attitude toward God will not miraculously change as soon as we die. If we have no need of God while we are living here on the earth, we will have no need of Him after we die. Thus, the only place for us to exist for all eternity, after we die, is a place where God is not. This is the place we call Hell.

Through prayer, we acknowledge our need for God and give God permission to work in our situation.

Prayer Is a Result of Falling In Love With God

When two people fall in love, it is difficult for them to think of anything except the one they love. They spend every moment that they can simply talking with, and being in the presence of, the one they love. And when they cannot do this, they are still constantly thinking of the one they love.

When we fall in love with God, it is difficult to think of anything except God. We want to spend every moment that we can, simply talking with, and being in the presence of God. What this means is that we bring the presence of God into everything that we do. Prayer then becomes, not a ritual that we perform, but rather an attitude that acknowledges God’s presence with us, no matter what we are doing.

Prayer Is the Very Breath of Spiritual Life

Prayer is to our spirit what breathing is to our body. Our body cannot live without breathing air. As soon as we cannot breathe anymore, we die. Our spirit has the same need. It needs communication (prayer) with God to live just as surely as our body needs air to live.

Through prayer, we allow God to be a controlling influence of our mind and that is what brings life to us. Listen to Romans 8:6 (NIV): “The mind of sinful man is death, but the mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace.” As we communicate with God though prayer, we allow God to bring life and peace into our life.

Prayer Is the Path to Strength and Peace

It is very rare to find a Christian who boasts of inner peace and never prays. It is almost impossible to find peace in this life without God’s presence in our life.

Most people want peace in their life but the problem is that most are looking in the wrong places. They try to find it through escaping. Thus, they overdose with alcohol, drugs, etc. They find a peace for a short while, but all of their burdens soon reappear as soon as the effects of the overdose is gone.

Others try to find peace through their work, through friends, through recreation, etc. However, these activities are all temporary. We cannot work all the time and friends do leave. Recreation is only enjoyable for a short time.

Only God can offer a peace that will stay with us forever because what God offers us is eternal. It is something that will last forever, not only while we are here on the earth, but also after we have entered heaven. This is why it is so important that we spend time in prayer with God. We are telling Him that we want to be with Him, both now and forevermore.

 




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