This week, we’re featuring a series of blog articles that all relate to prayer. If there’s one thing to commit to in the New Year, it’s tough to top prayer. Today’s article was originally published on April 18, 2012.
An uncomfortable question, maybe? If so, hang in there with me! Take a minute, and think about the following questions:
- What is prayer?
- Is it a monologue or dialogue?
- Why is it important?
What Is Prayer?
Prayer is our communication link to God through Jesus Christ. There are several scriptures where Jesus says that we are to pray to the Father in His name. John 14:13 says, “And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.” Jesus is our advocate and the only way we can be in the presence of God. That’s why He sacrificed Himself on Calvary, to be our atonement and ultimate sacrifice.
Before Christ, the law required that the priest sacrifice something (usually an animal) in the temple to atone for a sin. All communication had to go through the priest. After Christ’s death and resurrection, He became the intercessor. Now, all of mankind has the opportunity to have a personal relationship with God and spend eternity in His kingdom.
Is It a Monologue or a Dialogue?
Many times people think that prayer means putting together a wish list. Others think it’s just us talking to God. But it’s more than that. It’s a dialogue. God talks to us when we pray, if we let Him.
It’s no different than when we carry on a conversation with another person. If you do all the talking, the other person can’t communicate back. So sometimes we need to let God talk back to us. He does that in many ways, and sometimes not right away. So our prayers need to be continuous — not just us talking to God but, more importantly, listening for God.
Why Is It Important?
Well, it’s one way we commune with the Lord and something that, per scripture, needs to be done all the time. It’s one of the major ways we keep our spiritual lives strong.
If I were to ask you to rate your spiritual life right now and then ask how you rate your prayer life, chances are your answers would match. If you’re strong spiritually, you’re most likely talking and listening to God very well. If you’re struggling spiritually, you’re probably not talking or listening to God very well. Just making a small change in your prayer life can have a huge effect, both for the better and the worse. So keep those lines of communication open to the Lord and for the Lord, and I know that God will bless you.
This article has undergone ministry review and approval.