My son has this praying thing down. He will not let any meal happen without a prayer. He will not sleep without a prayer. At meal times he prays for the same thing. Food, family members, and that he got to go to the library that day (which isn’t always the case). At bedtime he prays for family members, good days, and a dinosaur. I love that praying is a habit for him. I love that prayer is also a habit for me.
Without a doubt praying is one of the most impactful spiritual disciplines I can engage in because it puts me in direct communication with God. Prayer changes everything. Why?
First, because I am forced to focus and give my undivided attention to the most important relationship I have. I notice a difference in my relationship with my family if I stop what I am doing and look at them when we are having a conversation. I am communicating to them that they are the most important thing happening in that moment. Communicating with God through prayer is one way of placing Him first in my life. He is the priority.
A second reason that prayer is so important to me is that it often brings to my attention who God is. God is sovereign…he is in control! He is loving…he listens to me! He is a shepherd…he guides and disciplines me! In different seasons of my life God reveals his character to me in different ways. Prayer helps me to communicate to God with that in mind.
The third reason prayer is valuable to me is that I can talk to God. Praying to God gives me the opportunity to communicate with my Savior. I am able to bring glory to His name by worshipping Him in prayer. He has blessed me abundantly and through these times of communication I can thank him for the gifts and opportunities he is giving to me.
Fourth, I can get real with God during prayer, confessing sins and weaknesses that I need His help to overcome. Prayer gives me the opportunity to not only ask for his guidance and help for my own life but for others. I can intercede for those who are hurting or in need and know that God hears and will respond.
The final reason prayer changes things for me is that I am given an opportunity to listen to what God is telling me. To be still and listen is so challenging for me. I seem to prefer to fill my head with my own words instead of reflecting on His words – the words he has communicated with me through Scripture, through spiritual leaders, and loved ones. In prayer I can listen to and reflect on what He says to me. Psalm 85:8 says “I will listen to what God the Lord says; he promises peace to his people, his faithful servants—but let them not turn to folly.”
Prayer changes everything for me because I have a relationship with my Creator. I cannot imagine the condition of my relationship with God if I were not given the opportunity to pray. Growing in my relationship with God is important; therefore, communicating with Him is essential. Prayer changes everything.
“Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always.” 1 Chronicles 16:11