I once had a professor tell the class, “I am not really sure how prayer works. But what I do know is that it really does work.”
Think about it for a minute. God, the God who created you and me, along with countless galaxies, the same God who is so big and vast and beyond our wildest imaginations…that same God cares enough to listen to our prayers. Not only does He care to listen, but He loves to listen. He delights in hearing from us.
Is your mind blown yet? How about this one…The same God who tells the planets to keep on spinning takes the time to listen and care about you when you pray and ask, “Lord, please help me find my keys.”
Yep. There is no problem too big or too small for Him. Our trivial problems don’t annoy God, He loves it when His kids talk to Him.
We can do nothing in this life, that is of any beneficial significance, apart from prayer. 1 Thessalonians 5:17 reminds us to “pray without ceasing.” The reason for this command is that our power and strength do not come from within ourselves. Instead, God is the source of any strength, any power, and any good that we can do. 1 John 5:14-15 reminds us that God hears our prayers and answers them.
God moves and works in concert with our prayers, but only when our prayers are in-line with His own perfect will. James 4:3 says, “You ask and do not receive because you ask wrongly.” This is a stark reminder that God’s ways are not our ways and His thoughts not our thoughts. (Isaiah 55:8-9)
But, if God were to only act whenever His people prayed correctly (in accordance with His will) then many things would never actually come to fruition. That why God acts independently and is subject to no other being’s actions. God is free to act on His own. As the almighty, most Holy God there is none above Him.
With that said, God does delight greatly in the prayers of His people. (Proverbs 15:8) Psalm 145:18-19 says, “The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth. He fulfills the desire of those who fear him; he also hears their cry and saves them.”
It is very apparent all throughout the Bible that God both desires and delights in the prayers of His people. There are so many examples of God moving and working because of the prayers of His people. For example, in Acts, chapter 12 records a prayer meeting of believers who were praying for Peter’s release from prison. The result? A recently released Peter knocks on the door before their prayer meeting was even over with! God not only listens to prayer, He also answers prayer.
Prayer is our communication with God, it is the way that we talk with our creator and savior. There is no other thing; no program, philosophy, or natural strength that can surpass its power in our lives.
We know that God does not have to listen to our prayer, He is not bound by our words. And yet, He chooses to listen to us.
God listens, and prayer works. Praise Him for that simple and yet profound truth.
So, what do we do?
What do we do when we face uncertain times? We pray.
What do we do when the car breaks again and we don’t have money to fix it? We pray.
What do we do when we are frustrated with our overbearing boss? We pray.
What do we do when we feel distant from God? We pray.
What do we do when we look at the empty seats on a Sunday morning? We pray.
What do we do when tears come to our eyes when we think about our son, or daughter, or friend, or sibling, or spouse, or co-worker who does not know Jesus and His love?