The “Benefits” of Praying

“Because I said so.  That’s why.”

Did your parents ever say that to you as a kid?  I don’t remember Mom saying it often, but she did say it.  I hated it so much!  I just wanted to know why, that’s all.  I just wanted a reason behind the request so I could better understand it.  That’s all.  Why can’t they simply provide that for me?  I remember thinking through all these thoughts about how hard a life I was leading in suffering through such injustices at the hand of my mother.  Sometimes I would think these things.  Other times I would verbalize these things.  Both yielded the same result.  Mom didn’t explain…because she didn’t have to.

Brief side note…remember when you swore you’d never say that to your kids?  How’s that goin’ for ya?  {;-)

If Mom didn’t have to give me a reason (and she didn’t), and I just had to do what she was telling me to do (which I did), how much more so is that the case with God?  Does the sovereign creator and ruler of the universe have to give us the reasons He tells us to do something?  It’s an obvious “no,” folks.  He can do what He wants, and He can not do what He doesn’t want to do.  He owes us nothing.

Although she was well within her rights as a parent to not have to explain herself to her young son, she didn’t always refuse to.  In fact, many times she did, and they proved to be good times of teaching for me.

God does the same with us throughout the Scriptures.  In His kindness, He has chosen to communicate with us, His children, and loves us enough to tell us what is best, what would honor Him, but also to give us the answer to the “Why?” we may ask (even when He knows sometimes, like tender young Peter with his mother, the motive behind the question is just to delay obedience).

We’re told to pray (1 Thess. 5.17).

In fact, Christ assumes we pray (Matt. 6:5,6,7 – Note the phrase “When you pray,” three times in a row).

But the Bible is replete with Scriptures showing the benefits of praying that give us all the more reason to grow in prayer as a church. Let’s take a look at a few.

We pray because we can have peace of mind and protection (Philippians 4:6,7).

We pray for wisdom and guidance before we make important decisions (Luke 6:12,13).

We pray for more workers for a task that requires more people than we have (Luke 10:2).

We pray to protect us from falling into temptation because of the weakness of our faith and flesh (Matt. 26:41).

We pray because He listens (1 John 5:14).

And finally, one of my personal favorites; we pray to God because He is for us and He has the means to give us what we’re asking (Matt. 7:7-11).

What about you?  Which of these “benefits of prayer” struck you?  Can you think of others?  Why do you pray?

I love being your pastor, look forward to growing with you in prayer, and can’t wait to be back with you at church on Sunday.

Love in Christ,

Pastor Peter
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