Prayer is a privilege for every believer. Yet, many of us don’t pray as fervently or as often as we should. Let’s meditate on these verses as we seek to understand the power of prayer.
Why is Prayer So Powerful?
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Simply put, prayer is opening our hearts to our Creator and communicating with Him. Many times, we approach prayer as if it were a one-way street, but it’s not.
When we pray, we should spend some time listening to God to speak. Prayer is powerful because it’s the opportunity for us to make our requests known to God but also for us to have His desires communicated to us.
What Are the Benefits of Prayer?
There are many benefits of prayer yet we don’t spend enough time in this crucial spiritual discipline. Here are four reasons we should be praying more often (and more fervently):
1. Prayer calms an anxious spirit. I don’t know about you, but sometimes anxiety and worry threaten to wear me down. I find that praying can help to ease my mind. When the words won’t come, I turn Isaiah 26:3 into a prayer, “Perfect peace belongs to me because my mind is stayed on You because I trust You. Help me to trust You, Lord.”
I encourage you to find your own verse or verses that will serve as a prayer that helps to keep you calm.
2. Prayer reminds you of God’s power. We serve an awesome God. That’s something we like to claim but I’m not sure we believe it. Or maybe it’s that we can’t conceptualize how awesome God is. The power of prayer is that it brings us into God’s presence so that He can minister to us. God Himself, can show us how powerful and mighty and awesome He is.
3. Praying increases your faith. One of my favorite stories in the Bible is that of the father whose son was possessed by a deaf-mute spirit (Mark 9:17-29). The disciples had tried to release the boy from his demonic captor but had failed. At the end of his wits, this poor father came to Jesus and said, “Help us, if you can” (Mark 9:24).
I almost imagine that Jesus was a little incredulous but I understand how the man felt. He wanted to believe that Jesus could help his son but so many others had failed to help him before. Finally, he said, “Lord, I believe, help my unbelief!” (Mark 9:24)
It may seem as if this man’s statement is contradictory, but who among us hasn’t felt this way? We want to believe but sometimes it’s hard. Praying helps to strengthen our faith. And the more we see our prayers answered, the more we’ll be able to believe that they will be answered in the future.
4. Prayer strengthens your relationship with God. You may have heard this analogy before: imagine you were granted an audience by a powerful king. Would you show up? What if he promised to listen to all your grouses and grant you the desires of your heart as he saw fit?
Prayer grants us access to God’s throne room. We get to be in the presence of the Supreme King. But this King is not like any earthly king. He genuinely loves you and wants to cultivate a relationship with you.
What does the Bible say about the power of prayer?
As you’ve probably guessed, the Bible has a lot to say about the power of prayer. From Genesis to Revelation, we read stories of men and women who have accomplished great things because they spent time talking to God.
Jehoshaphat prayed to God when the armies of Moab, Ammon, and some of the Meunites came against him and Judah had victory over their enemies (2 Chronicles 20). Elisha prayed for the son of the Shunammite woman and raised him from the dead (2 Kings 4:8-37). Peter prayed for Dorcas and she was restored to life (Acts 9:35-37).
The power of prayer is accessible to all who believe. Meditate on these verses and remember that the God you serve is powerful.
Prayer can grant healing and peace to those who believe. Prayer has the power to give us wisdom which all u
- Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working. – James 5:16 ESV
- Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. – Philippians 4:6-7 ESV
- If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. – James 1:5-6 ESV
When we humbly go to God in prayer, He hears us and is willing and able to grant us the desires of our hearts according to His will.
- Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. – Mark 11:24 ESV
- Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it. – John 14:13-14 ESV
- And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. – 1 John 5:14 ESV
It is through prayer that we confess our sins and receive forgiveness, grace, and mercy. God draws near to us when we pray and He’s able to meet all our needs.
- 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 ESV
- If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. – 1 John 1:9 ESV
- The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth. – Psalm 145:18 ESV
I found myself pondering the power of prayer as I read A Christmas in the Alps. The main character Simone struggled with anxiety as she faced one of her greatest fears. She was in the perfect place to experience the power of prayer but she didn’t fully accept the privilege of approaching her Heavenly Father in that manner.
My Review of A Christmas in the Alps
When Simone finds an unopened letter from her great-grandmother talking about a hidden treasure, she’s skeptical. But when her best friend convinces her to go looking for her great-grandmother’s lost treasure, Simone finds herself on the way to France.
Though there was a light element of romance, Christmas in the Alps focused on Simone’s search for her great-grandmother’s treasure and the family she found in the process. This was a short, sweet read that showed how history can sometimes shape the present in both positive and negative ways.
Know God: We were designed for community. Christmas in the Alps is a reminder that God can use even the hard things in our lives for good. Simone has experienced a number of difficult things in her life but in every case, God redeemed it for good. While not every difficulty in our lives will have a happy ending, they all serve as opportunities for us to draw closer to God.
Know yourself: A Christmas in the Alps is the story of Simone’s self-discovery. She started out on a search for her great-grandmother’s treasure more because of her best friend than for herself. Eventually, she became curious about her heritage and really started looking for answers.
Run your race: Both Kyle and Simone experienced pressure to conform to their families’ expectations. In the process, they both learned how important it was for them to be themselves. While our family can influence our decisions, ultimately we have to do what’s right for us. We have to follow our path.
The faith element was faint but readers will be reminded of the necessity of prayer and the power of forgiveness. Readers will also be reminded that God can use any situation for good and that prayer brings peace.
About A Christmas in the Alps
Get ready for a magical mountain holiday
After a time of heartache and loss, Simone Winthrop discovers a tantalizing letter from her French great-grandmother, which seems to suggest that Simone is heir to a family treasure. Ever practical, Simone assumes the claim is baseless, but her best friend encourages her to find out for sure. Despite her deep-rooted fear of flying, she boards a jet to travel to Paris at Christmastime to uncover the truth.
During the long flight, Simone meets the charming Kyle Larsson, who’s on his way to France to become an apprentice clockmaker. Though they abruptly part ways, an unexpected rendezvous in the French Alps at Simone’s family’s clock factory may lead to the discovery of the family treasure . . . and so much more.
About Melody Carlson
Melody Carlson has written more than 200 books (with sales around 6.5 million) for teens, women, and children. That’s a lot of books, but mostly she considers herself a “storyteller.”
Her novels range from serious issues like schizophrenia (Finding Alice) to lighter topics like house-flipping (A Mile in My Flip-Flops) but most of the inspiration behind her fiction comes right out of real life.
Her young adult novels (Diary of a Teenage Girl, TrueColors, etc.) appeal to teenage girls around the world. Her annual Christmas novellas become more popular each year. She’s won a number of awards (including Romantic Time’s Career Achievement Award, the Rita, and the Gold Medallion) and some of her books have been optioned for film/TV. Carlson has two grown sons and makes her home in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and yellow Lab dog.
To find out more about Melody Carlson, visit her website at http://www.melodycarlson.com/
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