Prayer is a powerful tool. It can be used individually, in a group, or done by several people on an individual basis. Prayer serves a variety of purposes. Oprah Winfrey tells what her idea of prayer is all about in the accompanying video. Prayer can be simple. It need not have a specific style or be filled with Bible-like words. Prayer can be as simple as, “Help.” One can pray any time, any place. Although children may not allowed to formally pray in school, if it is done silently, no one but God would know the difference.
Prayer brings people together. If a person is dealing with a need, an illness, or a family is facing difficulties, it helps for others to join in prayer for whatever the situation might be. Knowing that others care helps to bring a sense of community and caring to the one(s) in need. Times of trouble and concern can cause a person to feel alone. Through prayer, that feeling can be eliminated.
Prayer builds strength. When a person is in great need, or is suffering through some hardship or concern, it can be overwhelming. This can produce anxiety and feelings of helplessness. Through prayer, anxiety may be calmed, and strength is restored. There is strength in numbers, as well, so shared prayer is promoted in times such as this.
Prayers lessens fear. All throughout the Bible, God instructs, “Do not be afraid,” or words similar to this. Life brings many fears. Money problems, illness, health concerns, unemployment, family dysfunction and/or arguments, and so much more. Through prayer, worry and fear is relieved. Through prayer, an individual is brought into the present moment rather than fearing what may or may not happen. Putting faith in God to handle the situation removes the fear and anxiety.
Prayer builds faith. The more a person prays, the more of a natural habit it becomes. Prayers of need, want, or desire become accompanied by prayers of thankfulness, praise, and gratitude. Sharing the needs of everyday life with God, along with thankfulness for answered prayers, helps to build one’s faith.
Prayer is comforting. Concentrating on prayer helps to remove the clutter from the mind of everyday distractions and troubles that may be present. The more that is going on in life, the more prayer is needed. Let it go, and let God handle it. If this sounds like an impossible idea, give it a try. The bigger the trouble, the bigger the prayer. Pray, asking God for His love and care in whatever is being asked. Ask for strength and wisdom to deal with the outcome in whatever way is right in His eyes. With this, He will comfort those in need. Prayer, in this way, transforms worry into hope.
Psalm 145: 17-19 says, “The Lord is righteous in all he does, merciful in all his acts. He is near to those who call to him, who call to him with sincerity. He supplies the needs of those who honor him; he hears their cries and saves them,” (Good new bible with deuterocanonicals/apocrypha, 1979, New York, NY: American Bible Society).
Say a little prayer. Include a prayer for someone in need. It will make the whole day better.