If God is going to do His will, then why pray?
If that is a question that you would ask then you don’t understand why we pray. We pray to develop and strengthen our relationship to God. It’s an opportunity to praise and thank an almighty and glorious God. To many of us God is nothing more than a Santa Claus who gives us whatever we ask for. Then when we don’t get it, we are disappointed. Prayer is not about us but about God.
We find a woman who very much wants a son. Her name is Hannah and her story is found in 1 Samuel. She prayed for a son and made an agreement with God that if He would grant her request, she would give that son back to Him. God did give her the son that she wanted and after she gave the boy to Eli the High Priest to help in the Temple she prays this prayer.
My heart rejoices in the Lord; in the Lord my horn is lifted high. My mouth boast over my enemies, for I delight in your deliverance. There is no one holy like the Lord; there is no one besides you, there is no Rock like our God. Do not keep talking so proudly or let your mouth speak such arrogance, for the Lord is a God who knows and by Him deeds are weighed. For the foundations of the earth are the Lord’s; upon them he has set the world.
1 Samuel 2:1-3; 8
Notice that Hannah’s prayer was centered on God. Picture her situation; she pleaded with God for a son and when she has her prayer answered, gives the child back to God. As a mother this had to break her heart. But her focus is still on God. Very often our main purpose of our prayers is on us; what I want, my situation, my disappointments or my needs. Yes, God does want us to pray for ourselves but not as the main focus. We need to change how we think about prayer. Have you ever prayed for what God wants? God wants his children to gain knowledge in what He teaches us in His Word. God wants people to believe in Him and that His Son died on the cross and rose from the dead. God wants people to encourage and love one another. God wants Satan’s attempts to fail. Have you ever prayed for those things? Remember, we are changing our focus from us to God. God wants our praise, because when we praise Him it reminds us that we serve a truly awesome God. It is good to thank God in our prayers. It is with a heart of thanksgiving that we draw closer to Him.
We are building a stronger and more intimate relationship with God, and much of that building is through prayer.