“Trouble and perplexity drive me to prayer, and prayer drives away perplexity and trouble”
– Philip Melanchthen
Nothing drives people to prayer much like a want, need, suffering or affliction. I remember earlier in my spiritual journey how I only prayed when I needed help with an exam or when I was in physical pain. Although God certainly wants us to ask Him for our needs, this habit of only asking when in need, won’t do much for our spiritual life. What would a relationship between a father and a child be like if the child only talked with the father to ask for things?
So how do we pray without asking?
Prayer serves a purpose, but it is not limited to needing help. There are many reasons why people are urged to pray, but I’d like to focus on three of them:
- Since God is God, then we should give Him our whole minds and hearts – our whole being! We owe Him adoration, praise, and thanksgiving, among other things. He is also our Heavenly Father and it pleases Him to hear His children talk to Him.
- God has created us to know, love, and serve Him. We get to know someone better by conversing with them. We love someone more when we know them better. And when we love someone more, we serve them better.
- Prayer is food for the soul. In prayer, we have a true and real encounter with God who is the source of all that is good and true and beautiful because He is Goodness and Truth and Beauty. Each time we pray, we are transformed and become more holy – more like God. At every moment, He calls us to a closer union with Him as He knows that nothing else will make us truly happy and at peace.
Prayer can be a simple conversation. It is telling God about your day, thanking him for the blessings, or the lifting up of our hearts and minds to heaven. It is practicing the presence of God who is truly always with us. Sometimes it can be a conversation without words via a quiet sense of trust or listening for a message. Sometimes prayer is also seen by our actions, by how we interact daily with others, or our day to day attitude.
When you say
“I give this day to you Lord”
“What would you like for me to do today?”
“Make me be a blessing for someone today.”
“Today is a glorious day”
These are prayers.
Thinking about why it is necessary for us to pray, St. Augustine said it best:
“You have made us for yourself, O Lord, and our heart is restless until it rests in you.”
This restlessness is not necessarily born out of want or a need for something, it can be born out of our fears, anxieties, or discontent.
We often pray for things to change, but prayer should be something that changes us from within.
Try doing a prayer of offering each day staring today and see what happens.
I promise that you’ll be amazed.
The thoughts and opinions expressed in this article are entirely my own.
Written by Christmas Pammit for worldurbanista.com
Christmas is blessed to be a wife, mother, and speech-language pathologist. Besides helping her students learn to communicate, she enjoys having long talks with her husband, playing with her children, reading good books, and singing like a pro when she’s alone or with her family. Born and raised in the Philippines, she is now happily raising her three children in New York with her husband.