Does Prayer Work?

If God knows everything we need, why pray? Does prayer change anything? Is the purpose of prayer only to soothe our minds?

If God controls everything, and the universe is a very complex giant machine that is preprogrammed, then prayer would seem to be nothing more than a calming exercise. It doesn’t change anything. If, however, choices really matter, then everything is not set in stone, and the future is at least somewhat open. 

Could it be that God has so designed things so as to allow for multiple possibilities? Could it be that God has so designed things so that it takes a convergence of wills to push the future in the direction of justice and love?

If God has invited us to participate with God in ongoing creation, in making all things new, then our choices matter. When we align our wills with God’s will, powerful change can happen. 

Theoretical physicist, theologian, and Anglican priest John Polkinghorne draws an analogy using lasers. Light behaves sometimes as waves, other times more like bullets. A laser beam is powerful because the crests and valleys of the waves are in sync – the high and low points of each wave match the others. Similarly, when our wills align with the divine will in collective prayer, spiritual power is unleashed. Lives are rescued and restored, gangbangers are filled with love, broken relationships are reconciled, and justice cascades like mighty waterfalls. 

“People ought to always pray and not grow weary.” (Jesus) 

About Dr. Larry Taylor

Radical Anabaptist, Jesus Freak, Red Letter Christian, sailor, thinker, spiritual director, life coach, pastor, teacher, chaplain, counselor, writer, husband, father, grandfather, dog-sitter

Posted on July 28, 2020, in anabaptist, apologetics, Bible, Bible Teaching, Christianity, Jesus, Justice, Kingdom Life, kingdom of God, Peace Shalom Hesed, Prayer, Spirituality, Worship. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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