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Reflections on Prayer

Mike Schrage, Executive Director

I visited Korntal, Germany, recently. Click here if you are interested in learning more about the deep Moravian history of this quaint village. This group of people prayed more effectively than most and sent more missionaries per capita than most. They knew how to ask! They proved through a century of practice that prayer and global evangelism are directly linked and can change the world.

Haven’t we all had this experience sometime in our lives? We prayed to God, but because we didn’t see any difference we thought He didn’t care or didn’t act. When we pray and nothing seems to happen, it causes us to lose desire and determination. We say to ourselves, “What’s the use?”

That’s not true, though, is it? Think about prayer with one of your children. When my son asks, I hear. Because he is my son, I pay close attention and have my mind fixed on what he’s asking. Though he may come back to me again with his request, he really doesn’t have to repeat it. I’ve got it.

Nor does he have to do anything special to make the request. If he’s dirty, he doesn’t need to get cleaned up. He doesn’t have to wait until I’m rested. No, he feels the freedom to ask when he wants.

Just as he feels the freedom to ask when he wants, as his father I choose to respond when it’s best. In my time. My time may not be the same as his. My answer may not be the one he would want. That doesn’t diminish the importance of the ask, though. I can’t read what’s in his mind; he has to make it known to me.

God’s not like that. He knows what’s in my heart. We don’t approach God in prayer for the purpose of informing Him of anything. We approach God with our heart’s desires because in asking, faith is exercised, love is shown, hope is expressed, and relationship is developed with the One who knows best.

Prayer exposes our desires and intentions. In response our Abba Father kindly shows how well our own intentions align with His own.

Amazing, isn’t it!

Jesus said it best in John 16:24, “Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.”

What do you think about this verse? What do you need? Have you taken the time to open your heart and directly ask the Father while remembering that He is God and the source of everything?

Prayer’s impact is not dependent on the piety or passion of the one praying but on the preference and power of the One listening.

That is good news!

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