Praying is good praying is like the lifeline to those who believe in God. As Martin Luther King, Jr said, “To be a Christian without prayer is no more possible than to be alive without Breathing”. Prayer benefits us more than we think. Prayer does not change God, but it changes him who prays. Soren Kierkegaard. So prayer is not to change God because God already loves us. Jesus said “And I tell you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened. What father among you, if his son asks for a fish, will instead of a fish give him a serpent; or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him. Meaning that we should not be sacred to ask or worry about what we will get for it will always be good and better for us.
The Bible does not specifically say on how we should pray but it tells us how not to pray. A very good example is the one that Christ gave in Mathew 6 “And when you pray, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard for their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him. Pray then like this. I would like to draw your attention to especially the last sentence. Pray then like this. Jesus uses a lot of similes especially when He is describing how the kingdom of God is like. Meaning that it is like it but it is not it. Also here He uses the same technique. If you read the Lords Prayer then you find that it covers very important aspect of our daily life. There things that this prayer does not cover which are just as important. Also you would not want to ask the same thing over and over again would you?
Then have you ever-wondered why do people memories prayer? The Lord’s Prayer is one of the best-loved and most spoken prayers in Christendom. At Easter Sundays, it is thought that over 2 billion people worldwide recited this prayer. It is used in church services, schools, in small groups and in many individual private times with God. The traditional Lords Prayer is based on the Authorised Version of the scriptures in 1611. Other versions in common use are from the New English Version (adopted by the Church of England in 1977), and the Catholic version of the “Our Father”. The Lord’s Prayer differs in length – the Catholic Church omits the doxology at the end (“For thine is the kingdom, the power, etc.). All these popular versions base the text on Matthew 6:9-11, rather than as it appears in Luke 11:2-4.
Do you know that repeating prayers and words is something that goes on in pagan rites and rituals, the powerful part of it becoming their repetition and chanting? Would it then be fair if we would say that if we also repeat the Lord’s Prayer we turn into pagan worshiping ritual? It is quite evident that were asked by the Lord not to repeat our prayers.
The words to the Lord’s Prayer are not a magic formula either that if you say enough times or in a certain way your prayers will be answered. It does give us an outline as to the types of items, which may be included when we talk to our Heavenly Father. Even these words could be chanted in an improper manner if we are just mindlessly repeating them. One preacher said, “It is better to have your heart without words than your words without heart.”
There are a certain set of words which I repeat prayers in reference to my family and my ministry. They are almost the same every night. I can assure you I will mean them as much tonight as I meant them the first night they were used. Now in times of need, you are likely to have a particular issue in the forefront. To talk with God about the issue repeatedly is not wrong. Jesus before his death prayed the same prayer repeatedly: Matthew 26:39, 42. Notice, “So He left them, went away again, and prayed the third time, saying the same words” (Matthew 26:44). Jesus’ prayer was not a vain repetition; each prayer was a heartfelt plea. Bringing a matter up repeatedly can show the strength of our desire. There is a parable in Luke 18:1-8 that we should consider. Luke tells us what the purpose of the parable is up front: It is to teach men to always pray and not to give up.
The vital emphasis to understanding these verses is on the word ‘vain.’ We are not to pray something we really don’t mean. Also, we should not be like a heathen who repeats a chant in order to earn God’s favour so that the prayer answered. God cannot be tricked or forced to answer us because we wear Him down by our own efforts. Prayer is to change us, not God. I do not think I would want to serve a God who could be tricked or who is no smarter than I am. A wise parent knows how to listen to the cry of a child and distinguishes whether they are pretending or they earnestly want us to solve a problem for them.
Should we continue to ask the Lord for the same thing if we do not get an immediate answer? Unless God tells me otherwise, I am not hesitant to repeat my prayer until what I have requested is in my hand or my heart. If God says to my heart that He plans to answer my prayer later and the need to pray about a topic is lifted, then it is all right to quit praying that prayer. God answers our prayers and most times it is not in the way we expect Him to answer us. Sometimes He can say Yes sometimes No and sometimes Hold on I have something better for you.
How would you feel if you have a friend that cares about you very much but everyday you have the same conversation? Would that relationship grow? Even if the conversation is very important but after a while it would become very boring and break up the relationship. So if were Christian and prayer is the heartbeat of our lives what kind of lives do we have if we repeat our prayers all the time?
When we repeat prayers in vain it shows in our part that we are not bothered about our prayer lives or who were talking to. It shows what we think about our self and to the one we are praying to. Yes prayer does not answer our prayers it is God who answers. If God is important in your life and you like communicating with Him, then you would take time to have a good conversation. Make it meaningful, intelligent, and genuine in truth and spirit. Be honest in your prayers even if you feel like saying something that is bad. You cannot lie to God, He knows what is our hearts, and He knows how you feel about it so why not just say it. Even if we have to pray like the psalmist did I think God prefer an honest prayer even it sounds bad than a good prayer full of lies. After all isn’t prayer for us? We need the prayers God doesn’t need our prayers it benefits us.