Prayer part 2

So I said in my last post that I would give my thoughts on prayer.

I do think that prayer is valuable.  I think the main point of prayer is to align your will with God’s will.  First of all, you have to believe and accept that God has a plan and that He has everything under control.  If you don’t believe that it would be pretty hard for you to want to align with His plan.

But when you look at the way Jesus teaches us to pray in the gospels we don’t see examples of asking for certain things.

Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
Your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth, as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
And lead us not into temptations,
but deliver us from evil.

-Matthew 6:9-13

The only part of that prayer that sees us asking for anything is when we ask to “give us this day our daily bread”.  And when you really think about it, you can survive off of less than you think.  It isn’t give us this day our daily all-you-can-eat-buffet.  So the majority of our prayer shouldn’t just be a long to-do list for God.  Jesus says that should be about 1/4th of your prayer.  The rest of the prayer calls us to praise God, ask for forgiveness and to pray for God’s will to be done in order to bring the kingdom of heaven to Earth.

So if we pray for something and it doesn’t happen, then we have to be at peace in the fact that God has things under control.  And that is hard sometimes!  Especially when you pray for someone to get better and they don’t, or for someone to stay safe on a trip and they don’t return.  These are “good” things so it is hard to deal with when it doesn’t happen.

So I think we should pray, but not necessarily for the reason of us asking for things.  We should pray in order to have that conversation/relationship with God so that maybe, just maybe, we can be a little more in tune with Him so that we can be more at peace and in-line with His plan.

– Jacob

Advertisements

Prayer

So my young adult small group is currently reading through the book Gray Areas by Mike Glenn.  We are only two chapters in but last night we had great discussions for almost 2 hours.  Most of the discussion kind of got away from the topic of the chapter, but it was still great.

One question posed by another person was on the topic of prayer.  He wondered if God already has a will and is going to do what He is going to do, does it matter if we pray?  He gave examples of praying for someone to be safe on a trip or for someone to be healed and said if God has already decided that it is “their time” to go, will my praying really make a difference?  And if not, why should I even pray?  Others then listed examples from scripture where people prayed and seemingly “changed God’s mind”.  The most notable example of this is Exodus 32:1-14.

I personally think prayer is valuable and important and have my own reasoning behind it, but I wanted to hear from some other people before I give my input.  Do you think prayer changes things?  Is prayer for us?  Should we just let God’s will happen and go with the flow?

Leave your answer in the comments.

– Jacob