The entirety of the biblical narrative is one that encourages human beings to form a relational dialogue with the Almighty — one that is created, fostered and advanced, in part, through prayer.
Yet there’s a growing faction of the public that tells Christians to silence their “thoughts and prayers” in the wake of tragedy and to, instead, take action. There’s somehow a diabolical disconnect and misunderstanding surrounding why we pray.
The rhetoric becomes so politicized that critics wrongly assume that anyone offering prayers to the afflicted is somehow refusing to consider any action. These critics somehow conflate prayer and policy, specifically when it comes to firearms, though the two paradigms are quite able to operate and exist independently or in combination with one another.
Either way, the reality is: the Bible commands prayer, tells us that prayer changes things and gives us a blueprint for how to invoke God on behalf of our concerns as well as in support of the welfare of others.
After events like the horrific school shooting this week Florida, it is entirely appropriate and warranted to pray for strength and peace for those harmed, and to ask God to bring his peace to their families, regardless of what critics say.
That should, in fact, be our immediate reaction. Furthermore, prayer helps transform the human heart. And in a culture that definitely needs transformation, ignoring that reality seems silly and potentially detrimental to both individuals and the whole.
Here are just 10 Bible verses that prove why prayer absolutely matters:
1) “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.” – 1 John 5:14
2) “Look to the LORD and his strength; seek his face always.” -1 Chronicles 16:11
3) “Is anyone among you in trouble? Let them pray. Is anyone happy? Let them sing songs of praise.” -James 5:13
4) “He will respond to the prayer of the destitute; he will not despise their plea.” -Psalm 102:17
5) “And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.” -Ephesians 6:18
6) “Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up.” -Luke 18:1
7) “Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.” -Colossians 4:2
8) “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” -Philippians 4:6
9) “I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— 2 for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. 3 This is good, and pleases God our Savior, 4 who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.” -1 Timothy 2:1-4
10) “Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.” Jeremiah 33:3