Why do you pray?
Really, why do you pray? Sometimes its good to consider why you do something that may have become a ritual, a habit, something that has lost its true intention.
When I finished reading the “word” that day in the stadium I folded it up and tucked it in my Bible. Even as I tucked it there between the pages of my Bible I heard the Lord say, “Take note where you put that paper.” Later, back at the hotel I looked to see where I had tucked the paper. I found it in Daniel 10.
“Just then a hand touched me and lifted me, still trembling, to my hands and knees.” Daniel 10:10
This verse jumped out at me because of the hand that was placed on my shoulder as I was weeping…the hand that belonged to the woman who received a “word” from God, wrote it down, and got up out of her seat to find the person God intended it for…
But then I read on…
“And the man said to me, “Daniel, you are very precious to God, so listen carefully to what I have to say to you. Stand up, for I have been sent to you.” When he said this to me, I stood up, still trembling. Then he said, “Don’t be afraid, Daniel. Since the first day you began to pray for understanding and to humble yourself before your God, your request has been heard in heaven. I have come in answer to your prayer. But for twenty-one days the spirit prince of the kingdom of Persia blocked my way. Then Michael, one of the archangels, came to help me, and I left him there with the spirit prince of the kingdom of Persia. Now I am here to explain what will happen to your people in the future, for this vision concerns a time yet to come.” Daniel 10:11-14
Daniel was a man of prayer.
Daniel’s prayer life was what set him apart.
The book of Daniel is filled with reasons to pray…
God gave wisdom to Daniel that gained him high position, setting him apart from those around him.
God enabled Daniel to interpret dreams, revealing things that Daniel didn’t know.
God provided supernatural protection from the lions for Daniel’s courage to fear Him alone.
Daniel knew prayer was important.
Daniel knew there was power in prayer.
Daniel knew and feared the One to whom he prayed.
In chapter 10, Daniel once again prayed, but this time he heard nothing from God for three weeks. As he was mourning an angel came to speak to him. Daniel was overwhelmed by the angel’s presence and the vision that came upon him caused him to fall, his face to the ground.
The angel said, from the first day Daniel prayed for understanding and humbled himself, his request was heard in heaven.
When we pray our request is heard in heaven.
“Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land. My eyes will be open and my ears attentive to every prayer made in this place.” 2 Chronicles 7:14
“The eyes of the Lord watch over those who do right, and his ears are open to their prayers.” 1 Peter 3:12
The words we pray may seem to fall to the ground or get stuck in the ceiling, but there is power in our words and those spoken in prayer to God, the Almighty, Sovereign, Ruler of the universe don’t go unnoticed. God promises in His word that He hears our prayers. He invites us to talk to Him; to praise Him, thank Him, petition Him.
The day we say our prayer God sends His answer.
“Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.” Jeremiah 33:3
“And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.” John 14:13
God created us for His glory. When we live in relationship with Him, we have purposes to fulfill here on earth. As Daniel had purpose in his day to serve the king and to tell of the dreams and visions that were for then and for the future, God wants us to pray as Daniel did so that we will hear things from Him that we do not know, so that we have wisdom and understanding beyond our own, so that we will fulfill His purposes here on earth in our generation.
Prayer impacts the spirit realm we cannot see.
“Then Elisha prayed, “O Lord, open his eyes and let him see!” The Lord opened the young man’s eyes, and when he looked up, he saw that the hillside around Elisha was filled with horses and chariots of fire.” 2 Kings 6:17
Sometimes I wish I had eyes to see in the spirit realm. What happens when I pray? What is going on between the angels of God and the demons of Satan? These verses give me a glimpse of angels fighting for God’s will to be done in answer to my prayer. I’m reminded that God’s will will be done on earth as it is in heaven even though I may not see the big picture. They remind me that there are many more angels fighting for me than against me.
When I received this “word” Mark and I had prayed together for two years concerning adoption. It seemed as though God hadn’t heard our prayer or perhaps His answer was, “No.” But these words to Daniel encouraged me because God said that the very first day Daniel began to pray, He heard his prayer. I remembered the very first day Mark and I prayed together about adoption, there in the basement while we were getting food from the refrigerator for Thanksgiving Dinner.
Prayer impacts the spirit realm.
What if Daniel hadn’t prayed for revelation?
What if Mark and I hadn’t prayed about adoption?
Battles rage between what is meant for harm, and what is intended for good.
How do our prayers affect these battles?
Do we really understand the power of prayer…the power of our words?
What we believe about prayer will be evidenced by our prayer life.
It will be seen in the time we spend in prayer, by the words we speak in prayer, and by our response to the ways God answers our prayers.
How often do you pray?
What kind of prayers do you pray?
How do you respond to God’s answers?
Because prayer is so powerful and impacts the spirit realm so that God’s will is done here on earth as it is in heaven, it is one thing the enemy works so hard to keep us from.
Consider how many books are written about prayer.
I don’t mean to make light of prayer, but it seems as though anything that receives so much teaching and instruction has become something that people struggle with, something they want some answers to. Yet, look at Daniel…“He got down on his knees and he prayed.”
Perhaps the ultimate battle is the one that keeps us from getting down on our knees!
At the time I received this “word” from God I was greatly encouraged. I was overwhelmed by His love and amazed by the way He “spoke” to me. Though I didn’t fully understand what it meant, I treasured His “word” and I knew He had heard our prayers. It was meant for a time yet to come, but I am so thankful that we prayed together and for the amazing ways God revealed His will for us as we continued the journey of adoption!