I have no idea how prayer works. But I cannot dispute that there is something happening when I, or others, pray to God. I have had more answers to prayers than I can begin to tell of, in this past difficult year.
I do know that when things get really difficult I go one of two ways. I either steer clear of God completely, because I think I’m making such a mess that I can’t be in relationship with him, or I lean in closer.
I don’t think you’ll have any trouble guessing which tends to work better for me! I have been leaning in so hard this year, and part of that has been through prayer. Prayer in all forms – deep longings that I can’t articulate; sobbed sentences; pages and pages of written words; poetry; whispers.
The verse that I’ve been looking at for the past couple of days, ends with Paul telling the readers to persevere in prayer, or pray all the harder. It’s good advice.
I’ll end with an answered prayer I was given last Friday. As I wrote yesterday I met, on a difficult day, with a chaplain to pray. As we finished praying I felt the most extraordinary peace replacing the anxiety I’d been living with for days. The morning had been wet with heavy rainfall, but as I left her room and stepped outside this was what I saw. Answered prayer takes many forms.