Why is it Important to Pray?

There are many reasons why it is important to pray.  I am sure that you can come up with your own list.

1.  Because it is our work as Christians.  Prayer is necessary because it is commanded.  It is the highest work entrusted to us as Christians.  (Luke 18:1, Eph 6:18, 1 Th 5:17) Christ teaches us to pray not only by instruction, by promises, but by showing us Himself, the ever-living intercessor.

2.  Because it is how we show God that we love Him, that He is number 1 in our life.  How do we show our husband, our wife, our children, our mother and father, that we love them?  By spending time with them.   We cannot say we love God if we are busy doing other things, too busy with other concerns.  It is how we show God He is important.  If we found out we needed to tune into a kidney machine 3x a week for 2 hours each time because our life depended upon it, for sure we would be able to find the time for it.  The beginning of prayer life is the realization that God is imporatnt and worth giving priority time to.

Let me tell you a secret.  Almost everybody thinks that prayer is in time, that time determines prayer, but actually it is prayer that determines time.  Time is actually in prayer.  We constantly make the excuse that we don't have time that is why we do not pray.  Actually it is our lack of prayer that causes our lack of time.

Remember the loaves and fishes that were offered to the Lord and which miraculously multiplied?  If we offer our time to God in prayer, He will do the same to our time.  This is literally miraculous, but I know from repeated experience that it happens.  Everytime I do not pray because I am so harassed, things always happen to make my schedule even more tight: the traffic gets worse, the people I am meeting are late, or I get sleepy.  But when I do pray, then I am able to accomplish a whole lot more even if I do not follow Steven Covey's Seven Habits.

3.  Because prayer is a part of our spiritual armor.  Guarding our minds against the allure of the world is an important element in protecting God's work in our life.  If temptations are not dealt with, particularly the temptation to doubt God's love and purpose for us, we will become indifferent to God's word and turn away from Him.  Prayer is part of our spiritual armor- you have to put on the whole armor, you can't just have the helmet of salvation and leave your chest exposed.  Imagine going to war with just a helmet!!  This armor is God's manifacture- to go into space, of course you'd insist on a space suit by NASA, not KMart.  So to survive as a Christian in a hostile environment, we have to use the spiritual armor God made for us, because He know exactly what we're up against.

4.  Because although prayer does not change God, it changes us. 

5.  Because prayer is not only our armor, but it is also a  powerful weapon.  You realize how powerful when you experience the efforts of the evil spirits to distract you from serious prayer.

Cory Aquino (former president of the Philippines, wife of the martyred Benigno 'Ninoy' Aquino) gave a speech in Rome in 1993 about the habit of prayer.  It was a very good sharing about her faith and the faith treasure Ninoy Aquino found when he was imprisoned.  She said that Ninoy told her that just when he lost everything, he found it all.  Prayer had given that to him.

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Thank you Lord for the gift of prayer, the gift of faith, and the wonderful privilege of knowing You as our Lord and Creator.

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