Prayer is a simple, powerful weapon we have available to us. We can talk to the living God who created us, loves us and wants a relationship with us. The simple answer to the question, why should we pray every day is this: Prayer is communication with our Papa.
So many people don't realize the power of prayer and others think that they don't know how to pray. But prayer is really easy. Prayer is talking to God. There are different reasons and ways to pray, but prayer is a conversation with God about the things on your heart, on your mind or moving in your spirit.
A Few Types of and Reason to Pray
Your Daddy loves you. He wants to hear from you and He wants to hear the desires of your heart.
“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.”
~ Matthew 7:7,8
I will often say to our son, “Ask and ye shall receive,” when he asks for something like a drink or a bowl of strawberries. Sometimes though when he really wants something he cannot have he'll remind me, “Mom, ask and ye shall receive!”
Contrary to what our son, and many other people believe, praying does not mean we are going to get whatever we want just because we ask. God is sovereign; He knows what is best. But if we ask for the things that line up with His will for our lives, we will see fruit. It doesn't always play out the way our earthly minds think it will or should, but we will see results.
Your Daddy also loves to help you with the simple things in life. The things you don't think are worth praying for, He wants to hear about. Pray for strength to pick up one more sock of the floor without screaming. Pray for a decent parking spot when you're out with the kids in the pouring rain. Just ask Him!
Our pastor gave this awesome correlation……..if complaining is the downward spiral of emotions, conversation and thankfulness is the upward spiral.
Give thanks to the God of heaven, for his steadfast love endures forever.
~ Psalm 136:26
Seeing reasons to be thankful is a choice. Letting God know you're thankful is another choice and another reason to pray. You have so much to be thankful for no matter what you don't have or what you need.
More importantly, we thank God for who He is.
Remember a time when your child, grandchild, niece or nephew showed you unexpected affection? It warmed your heart didn't it? Well, guess what, it warms God's heart when you tell Him how much you love Him.
When we worship God, we are exalting Him, talking to Him and reminding our flesh that He alone is worthy of our praise. When we pray, we humble ourselves. I don't know about you, but I need to check myself from time to time and remember who is really in charge and just how wonderful it is that that someone isn't me.
“But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him. God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.”
~John 4: 23-24
It's important too that we remember who we were before our salvation. Never forget where you came from. The road you walked to restoration may have been a long stretch or a short 2-block walk but God led you back to Him. That alone is enough to make me worship God. Before Jesus, I was a total mess. Now I'm half the mess I used to be and getting a little better every day by His grace.
God knows we don't understand everything and He knows we get frustrated with life, and even with Him. It's not the emotions that are wrong, but how we chose to vent those emotions that are sometimes wrong. God can handle your complaints and your questions.
You can complain all you want to so long as you're complaining to the One who can fix your heart and change your focus.
Did you ever notice that when you complain to a girlfriend they agree with you….and they add their complaint and then you think of another complaint and then they find a new fault to complain about? Soon the discontentment you have with your old sofa turns into grumbling about the house and telling your husband when he gets home that you want to move.
Okay, that might be a little extreme but you see the downward spiral I mentioned earlier. The thing about God is: after you complain, He can change your heart and your perspective if you let Him. You don't have to stay in the place of complaint and discontentment.
Confessing to God
God sees us washed in the blood of Christ, but He knows our feet get dirty as we walk through this world. We can dust them off with confession.
We aren't perfect and we are going to sin and make mistakes. This isn't a license to sin freely and ask forgiveness later. We are to work on our salvation, living every day the best we can with His help, knowing that when we fall, we can go to Him in prayer and we'll be forgiven. Not only will we be forgiven, but we will be helped up, dusted off and encouraged to try again.
Hearing from God
“Call to me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known.”
When we pray we also hear from God. He speaks to use just as much as we speak to Him. In fact, I've found that when I shut my trap long enough, He gives me answers and insight into the things I've asked Him about.
We often get too busy with our lives or even just our thoughts to hear from God. An awesome study that was life changing for me in hearing God's voice was Mark Virkler's 4 Keys to Hearing God's Voice. I'll be expanding on hearing God's voice more in a future post so stay tuned.
Praying isn't about using eloquent words and a special formula. It's about expressing the aspirations of our heart and soul to the Originator of those very desires.