The Purpose of Prayer

I am super excited and humbled to be writing this post. I really enjoyed studying about what the Bible says prayer gives us. This post will be about the immediate benefits of prayer, and what happens when we obey God’s call to pray. I was studying what God’s word says about what prayer does for us, and I came up with many, many things that prayer gives us. We will be going through some of them and the scriptures that back them.

When we pray, we recognize that God is there

“Pray then like this: Our Father in heaven……” Mathew 6:9

“And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.” -Hebrews 11:6

When we pray, we recognize our need for help

One rather meager definition of prayer is talking to God. Why do we need to talk to God? Because we can’t do this on our own! By praying we are recognizing the very fact that we can’t do this on our own. So in prayer, if we are truly and sincerely praying, we are humbling ourselves before God.

“But the tax collector, standing far off, would not even lift up his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me, a sinner!’ I tell you, this man went down to his house justified, rather than the other. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted.” –Luke 18:13-14

When we pray, Christ imputes his righteousness and strength to us

He delivers us from our temptations

God gives us the strength and righteousness of Christ himself! This is the same strength that allowed Christ to not give in to the tempter when the devil tempted him in the wilderness. (Mathew 4:1-11) This is the same strength that allowed Christ to endure the cross.

O what peace we often forfeit,
O what needless pain we bear,
All because we do not carry
Everything to God in prayer!

“What a Friend We Have in Jesus”

In Christ is found our strength, our joy, our righteousness. Oh, what prayer could do to change our lives.

And lead us not into temptation,
    but deliver us from evil.” -Mathew 6:13

“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” -James 4:7

“Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak” -Mathew 26:41

When we pray, God shows us all he has done

How many times has this happened to me! I go outside and get on my knees. Nothing has been going right, and I must turn to him. I pour out all my troubles, saying “O Lord! Help me!” And right then and there all he has to do is tell me “Look up”.

I look up into the sky. I look up at the wonderful display of stars that my savior has made in his own hands, and I am so amazed. As I sit in awe and amazement, and think of the power and magnificence of our God, I forget my troubles. Compared to this, my troubles are just to small to be thought about. If the God who created this great universe and holds every star in his hands; if this God is for us, who can be against us!!

And he doesn’t stop there.

“Art thou a sinner, soul?” He said,
“Then how canst thou complain?
How light thy troubles here, if weigh’d
With everlasting pain!

“If thou of murmuring wouldst be cured,
Compare thy griefs with mine!
Think what my love for thee endured,
And thou wilt not repine.

“Contentment” by William Cowper (read it here)

Oh Lord How Great Thou Art!!

When we pray, our hearts are filled with thanksgiving, as we remember all he gives us already

Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our debts” -Mathew 6:11-12

Enter his gates with thanksgiving,
    and his courts with praise!
    Give thanks to him; bless his name!” -Psalm 100:4

When we go to be in prayer, we are alone with God himself

“But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret.” – Mathew 6:6

When we pray, we draw near to God

The best thing we could ever do when we are in trouble, is to draw near to God. Prayer is just that.

“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.” -James 4:7-8a

“Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” -Hebrews 4:16

“Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water.” -Hebrews 10:22

We pray to submit to his will

In order for prayer to be effective, he must pray not only humbly, but submissively. God’s will is the best plan for us. If we do not submit to his perfect plan for our lives, it will be a whole lot harder for us. Don’t try to go against what God wants for you. Submit to his will, even it’s not the way you would naturally want to choose.

“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” -James 4:7

“And going a little farther he fell on his face and prayed, saying, “My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.” -Mathew 26:39

“For, being ignorant of the righteousness of God, and seeking to establish their own, they did not submit to God’s righteousness.” -Romans 10:3

When we pray, we must recognize we are in the presence of a holy and altogether righteous God

“But whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness, but is guilty of an eternal sin” -Mark 3:29

“For he who is mighty has done great things for me,
    and holy is his name.” – Luke 1:49

“Pray then like this: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name.” -Mathew 6:9

“For my own sake, for my own sake, I do it,
    for how should my name be profaned?
    My glory I will not give to another.” -Isaiah 48:11

When we pray, we are confronted with the need to ask for forgiveness

If we are submitting to God and the Holy Spirit, then when we pray we will often be convicted about our sinful desires and actions, in the presence of an awesome and holy God. If we continue to submit and listen to God, then we will ask God to forgive us and to purify us.

Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.” -Mathew 6:11-12

“Have mercy on me, O God,
    according to your steadfast love;
according to your abundant mercy
    blot out my transgressions.
Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity,
    and cleanse me from my sin!” -Psalm 51:1-2

“Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.” -James 4:8

When we pray, we should long to be like Christ to others

When we receive the self-less love of Christ, when we pray, we should long to be like him. When he forgives our sins, we must forgive others when they sin against us. When he died on the cross for us even while we were still his enemies, we must also love our enemies.

“But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” -Romans 5:8

“But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you” – Mathew 5:44

“And forgive us our debts,
    as we also have forgiven our debtors.” -Mathew 6:12

Finally, when we pray, we are reminded of the hope of his coming

We know he is coming again! And when we pray, we are reminded of this truth. Our sorrows will not last forever. One day he will wipe away every tear, and sin and sorrow will be no more.

“Hallelujah! For the Lord our God, the Almighty, reigns!” -Revelation 19:6

“Be strong and let your heart take courage,
All you who hope in the Lord.” -Psalm 31:24

“And now, little children, abide in him, so that when he appears we may have confidence and not shrink from him in shame at his coming.”-1 John 2:28

“Be patient, therefore, brothers, until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient about it, until it receives the early and the late rains.” -James 5:7

But I will hope continually and will praise you yet more and more.” -Psalm 71:11

“You also, be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand.” -James 5:8

“Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him, and all tribes of the earth will wail on account of him. Even so. Amen.” -Revelation 1:7

THANK YOU SO MUCH TO ANYONE WHO FINISHED READING THIS ENTIRE POST!! I you would like more posts like this, please tell me here, or hit the like button.

BTW: I had written extensive notes for this post from what I had been studying about it. Happily, I lost those notes so now 1) You don’t have to put up with an even longer post and 2) God was able to work through me to tell you what he actually wanted me to say, instead of following my own notes. (It would be nice to find that sheet of paper with my notes on it though……it had some handy things written on it)


For more resources on prayer you could read:


 

“Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” -Mark 11:24

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Author: Faith on the Farm

I’m just a Christian girl who’s striving to glorify God here on the farm. I love sunsets, roses, my dog, and about everything you can photograph on a farm. As you’ve probably guessed, I love photography. When I’m not reading my bible or working on schoolwork, you’ll probably find me cooking, practicing cello, or somewhere outside with my dog by my side and camera in hand. I also love to sing my heart out to my Saviour.