The Comfort of Prayer

Scripture says, “men ought always to pray and not lose heart” (Luke 18:1, NKJV). It has been said that prayer is the highest use of language ever conceived.
Paul writes, “pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you” (1 Thessalonians 5:17,18). Scripture is filled with the advantages of prayer. Jesus is such an advocate of prayer that his apostles ask him, “Lord, teach us to pray.” (Luke 11:1).
A farmer is visited by one of his city relatives. Before dinner the farmer bows his head and prays. His sophisticated relative jeers, “This is old-fashioned; nobody with an education prays at the table anymore.” The farmer admits that the practice is old and even allows that there are some on the farm who do not pray before their meals. Justified, the relative remarks, “So enlightenment is finally reaching the farm! Who are these wise ones?” The farmer replies, “My pigs.”
Prayer is scoffed at, but its power is evident to all who will see it. Jesus proclaims, “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you” (Matthew 7:7).
Alfred Lord Tennyson writes, “More things are wrought by prayer than this world dreams of.” /1 Millions have been touched by the power of prayer. John Masefield says, “God warms His hands at man’s heart when he prays.” /2 God wants to be involved in our daily lives. To “pray without ceasing” means we have a constant refrain of praise and appreciation and an ever ready contrition for sin on our lips.
Prayer is the fuel of faith. Martin Luther said, “none can believe how powerful prayer is, and what it is able to effect, but those who have learned it by experience.”/3 We learn its power and our faith is strengthened. Paul writes, “Therefore, I desire that the men pray everywhere without wrath or doubting” (1 Timothy 2:8). Mark says that if we truly believe that God can accomplish what we petition him for, he can perform works of majestic greatness (Mark 11:24). We must believe with all faith and know that he is a “rewarder of those who diligently seek Him” (Hebrews 11:1).
Prayer is comforting because we have the peace of sharing. No matter the dilemma, God is there to shoulder the burden. We feel relieved when we share things with him, since we know we are no longer alone in the battle. We have a shoulder to lean on and an ear to listen. And God never gossips nor ignores our pain.
Prayer sets Christians apart as we have a living God to pray to at any moment. To whom does the humanist turn when their hearts are wracked with pain, Nietzsche or Sartre? What about those who worship nature? Possibly, the praying mantis?
“For the eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous, and His ears are open to their prayers; but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil” (1 Peter 3:12). James adds, “the effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much” (James 5:16). The righteous have a bond with God that no one else possesses.
Prayer must be our daily companion. John Bunyon said, “he who runs from God in the morning will scarcely find Him the rest of the day.”/4 We need to let prayer walk with us in all the places we go as danger lurks in every corner and street.
1/ http://tinyurl.com/887he
2/ http://tinyurl.com/cubmb
3/ http://tinyurl.com/cer6r
4/ http://tinyurl.com/887he

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Richard lives in Florence, Alabama and is married to Deirdre. They have three daughters. He is an avid reader, devoted writer and lover of history and research. He is the author of "The Most Important Question" and is working on more books.

2 thoughts on “The Comfort of Prayer

  1. Richard, Another great article as usual! You said, “Prayer is comforting because we have the peace of sharing. No matter the dilemma, God is there to shoulder the burden. We feel relieved when we share things with him since we know we are no longer alone in the battle. We have a shoulder to lean on and an ear to listen. And God never gossips nor ignores our pain.”
    This is exactly the way I have felt about prayer the past few months. Not that I prayed so much for specific things, but just knowing that God was there…that he cared…was comforting to me. It’s also a relief to know that you don’t have to explain a lot of stuff to God. He already knows. So you can just say, “You know how it is, God. Help!”
    Karen

  2. Thank you, Karen for the kind words. Yes, the comfort of prayer is a warm blanket on a cold day. It is just what we need in this life.
    Richard Mansel

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