Monday, January 31, 2011

Prayer

The topic these last couple weeks between Scott and I has been on prayer.

Prayer is a very interesting topic and we have had a few loooong discussions on it. I want to share with you a few of my early thoughts, some information we found searching together, and what I ended up learning about it.

Let me first state that I know prayer is a wonderful gift that each of us have and are blessed with. I am going to pose a few questions in which I may sound negative toward prayer, but hear me out. And trust that I am only playing the devil's advocate on some questions to stimulate discussion on the importance of prayer!!
 
Why do we need to pray if we are willing to do whatever the Lord wants us to? For example, why should I pray if the Lord wants Scott and I to move to Utah. I will move to Utah because I know the Lord wants that for me. Or, why should I pray for Scott to get a job when I know the right job will come along for him and our family when the time is right. If someone has a grandparent that has a terminal disease, why pray for them to be healed if the Lord's will is that this person's time on earth is done? Why is it important to pray for the  president of the United States, if the prophets and scriptures say that we will know the second coming is coming soon when the constitution will hang on by a thread? Hmm, interesting.
 
Do you (kinda) see where I am coming from? I am willing to do whatever, go whereever, or say whatever the Lord wants me to, so why it it important to pray about it? I am the kind of person that always sees the cup half full. Everything happens for a reason, the Lord's reason.
 
Those were some of the questions I posed to Scott during our conversation. And here are some scriptures, quotes and other wonderful finds about prayer:

Is prayer a commandment of God? Not Moses' 10 commandments but what about here in D&C 10:5 "Pray always, that you may come off conquerer: yea, that you may conquer Satan, and that you may escape the hands of the servants of Satan that do uphold his work."

Praying is an opportunity to communicate and increase our relationship with our Father in Heaven. It is also important that we follow Jesus' example and "pray oft".

We also realized that most prayers are selfish. People are asking for this and that and they promise to do this, if their prayers are answered. Besides asking if I should go to the left or go to the right, I first need to decide for myself which is best and then take it to the Lord in prayer and ask if that is His will.

While praying we should talk this much --------- and listen this much ----------------------------------------------. (I know I am not that great at, but how important that really is!!)

Another great example we found was in Mormon 3:12. Mormon was praying for the Nephite people. Now, at this time they had all hardened their hearts and refused to repent. So why did Mormon pray for them? It does not go into detail of what words he used in his prayer, but he knows (through the scriptures) that everyone will turn away from God. So why does he pray for them??

By praying oft we have a closer relationship to our Father and feel His spirit more and then we will have a better understanding of His plan for us.

So, again I will pose those (silly) questions to you. Should I pray to know where we should live? No, I will pray for Thy will to be done. Should I pray for the president of the United States to lead our country in the right direction? No, I will pray for Thy will to be done. I will also ask that my heart will be soften so I can understand why things happen.

Prayer. Very interesting and deep topic. I encourage you to search out what prayer means to you. Talk about it with your spouse and children and see what you come up with.  And of course, feel free to comment here about any ideas that you might have, that might strengthen and edify us all together.

3 Comments:

rachel said...

I have had similar thoughts throughout our life about praying for different things. It's so hard to listen more than talk for me. I have learned not to ask if you don't want to really know because you'll be held accountable for the answers you recieve(he he) (even if it's hard). Prayer is such an impressive tool we have. God answers the prayers of each person so differently just like communicating with children is so individual. I love that. One of the amazing things that we know is that we can recieve revelation for ourselves.
I wonder if the reason why the constitution will hang by a thread is because people quit praying for the nations leaders? He knows what we are going to pray for before we pray for it. He knows what we need but by doing it I am showing my faith,acting on it and preparing to meet him:) Thanks for the awesome post. It really got me thinkin'.

All about the Monaghans said...

For me prayer keeps me from losing sight of what I really want. It keeps me on track when life is rushing by.

peachytiffers said...

I've thought about this post a few times since I read it a while ago. Thanks for sharing!