Saturday, November 30, 2019

Prayer: The Ultimate Gift

by Tim Howard

In a conversation some time ago the topic of prayer came up and the person I was speaking with said emphatically: “ I don’t believe in prayer, I believe in luck!” I jokingly said in response: “I too believe in luck but it seems the more I pray, the luckier I get!”

In it’s broadest definition, prayer is talking with God. This can be done audibly as God hears our words or silently, since God knows our thoughts. And because communication is a two-way connection, prayer includes both speaking to God and listening to Him speak to us.

Prayer is like having an internal cell phone that allows you to call God at any time and from any place.

Speaking of cell phones: According to a national survey from CTIA and Harris Interactive, nearly half (47%) of US teens say their social life would end without his or her cell phone and 80% say their Cell phone provides a sense of security while on the go.

In comparison, prayer is the ultimate cell-phone and many are taking advantage of this amazing gift. According to surveys by Barna Research Ltd. over a 10-year period, 82% of adults and 89% of teenagers pray in a normal week. 88% of women and 75% of men pray. 96% of professing Christians pray weekly, while 72% of people not describing themselves as Christians pray as well.

One reason I pray is because Jesus prayed. He carried on an ongoing dialogue with the Father and prayed daily. He prayed over meals, He prayed early in the morning and sometimes all night long.  He prayed short prayers and long prayers. He prayed for His enemies, His friends and His followers. He prayed in private and in public. Even with a cursory study of the Bible, we discover that it is imperative to maintain constant communication with the Father each and every day.

Prayer, however, does not negate God’s divine prerogative nor does it override His purposes. We have the privilege of asking and He retains the right to answer on the basis of His vantage point. We may not understand why He chooses to do what He does and His answers may defy logic and analysis from our perspective but His response is always filled with wisdom, foresight and love. He has our best interest in mind and knows what is correct. What we think we need isn’t always what we really need!

My prayer in this season is for us to continually give thanks throughout the year and not merely one day out of 365. The Thanksgiving season comes every November and is awesome, but Romans 1:21-24 gives us the rationale behind giving thanks each and every day. It’s worth reading to discover the logic for making this prayer. 

A cell phone will set you back a few bucks especially when you include the extensive package. It may provide teens and others with a sense of security but the ultimate cell phone is free! No upfront fee, no monthly service charge and no hidden cost. It truly does provide real security because the emergency line to God is always open. B.T.W. Everyone has been given an internal cell phone and if you pray, God will listen and if you listen, He will speak!

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