Purpose and Power of Prayer
Prayer is defined by Merriam-Webster as an address to God; an earnest request; the act or practice of praying to God. Prayer is also known as a petition or supplication. (Ephesians 6:18) Opening your heart and sincerely communicating with The Creator allows you to build a relationship that will lead and guide you toward your destiny.
Prayer is the ultimate way to communicate with God. In 1 Thessalonians 5:17 we find that prayer is actually a mandate: “pray without ceasing.” Prayer provides an opportunity to share our inner most feelings and thoughts with God in a manner that is personal and private. (Psalm 61:1-2) He can also respond and reveal His plan and instruction for our lives through our private prayer time. David cried out to God regularly in Psalm and God heard his prayers and delivered him.
The consistent practice of prayer strengthens our relationship with God. (Acts 6:4) The model prayer is found in Matthew 6: 9-13; however, God wants a heartfelt and personal conversation with His children. There is no right or wrong way to pray, as long as you are sincere and honest. God wants to hear from us about the big and small, good and bad, happy and hurtful things in our lives. As with any relationship, in order for it to grow you have to invest time and energy to develop and sustain it. The same is true with our relationship with God. He wants to talk to us regularly about everything that concerns us. No matter what challenges we face, God is always waiting to hear from us (1 Peter 3:12, Jeremiah 33:3)
Prayer is also a way to petition God for change and deliverance. (2 Chronicles 7:14, Psalm 34:4, Psalm 40:1-2) A perfect example of the power of prayer is witnessed in Acts 16 when Paul and Silas were imprisoned for preaching and teaching the good news. Because they worshipped God in spirit and in truth, when they began to pray and sing praises unto God they shook the foundations of the heaven and caused an earthquake to shake the foundations of the jail. That miraculous occurrence leds to their freedom and the salvation of the prison warden.
The power of prayer is connected to your level of faith. (Ephesians 4:30). When you trust and believe that God can and will answer your prayers, you increase your faith. (Hebrew 11:1, Mark 9:23) God is waiting to hear from us and He is moved when He hears from us. When we speak the Word, it causes angels to move on our behalf (Psalm 103:20) Asking God to enter into our hearts and lives allows Him to move on our behalf (Matthew 7:7-8).