Does Prayer Work?

But I have prayed for you that your faith may not fail. Luke 22:32

I happened to type “Prayer” into my Pinterest search bar this morning and boy did I get a spiritual eyeful. I’ll give you the link at the end of this post but suffice to say there was a whole wide range of pins on the subject.

Evangelist Luke writing, Byzantine illuminatio...
Evangelist Luke writing, Byzantine illumination, 10th century (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This got me thinking about prayer. How do you pray? Or do you even pray? My prayers have changed over the years. When I was young they were the prayers of church, whispered along with the priest’s words or out loud during the liturgy. During the kneeling down part of the service, I was either paying attention or not, fidgeting or wondering what I was going to do later that day, like riding my Schwinn bicycle around the neighborhood with my girlfriends.

One time as a young child, we missed church because it had snowed heavily. I remember being worried about the consequences and what God would think if I wasn’t there. So I took a cross I had in my room and prayed, maybe on my knees. I don’t remember what I prayed about but I remember I had a really good week, getting an “A” on a test and other assorted awesome stuff. That’s when I knew God had some serious pull.

Jim, my SO, doesn’t believe in praying for specific things. He thinks I do but honestly, my prayers are of the general variety. Does prayer work? I used to think it was silly stuff but the older I get the more I believe yes, prayer definitely has its potential.

It is amazing sometimes that I will pray for assistance for someone or some issue, again the prayers not being specific, and help will arrive in some shape or form. Honestly, if I leave well enough alone and not give God directions on how I want it done, s(he) will do a fabulous job. After all, it’s God we are talking here.

What doesn’t work is praying and then using my own control devices. Or praying and expecting immediate results. Prayer works fast sometimes and other times it does not. Maybe God wants us to practice a bit of patience.

Letting go of results is probably the hardest part of prayer for me. Maybe this surprises you- is there really a letting go part? Yes, I think this is the most powerful part of prayer- surrender. There in lies the freedom, the relief I have been seeking. That moment when I can lay my head down and feel a peace come over me that just wasn’t there before.

The results of prayer are often solutions I hadn’t thought of. Imagine that. That is when I know God is really good.

Click HERE for the Pinterest prayer board link.

Do you believe in prayer? What’s your favorite prayer or tell us how prayer has worked or not worked for you….

Join me on my graceful journey.
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16 Replies to “Does Prayer Work?”

  1. Yes! I believe in the power of prayer. MY biggest problem is expectation. I EXPECT them to be answered in MY way and in what I think is a timely manner. God chuckles and says “silly child” in most cases! Ha ha! That is usually when I pray for something for myself (a selfish prayer). Most of my prayers are for healing for people in my life, though. Whether it is physical, mental, spiritual or emotional. I think many people think prayer doesn’t work because they are often told ‘no’ or ‘not yet’. I have been pouty recently and I have told God that I am tired of hearing ‘no’! God just tells me to hush, it’s not my lesson and I needn’t worry about it. Um yeah. THAT is my lesson, I guess! I need to practice praying for the ability to deal with the outcome, no matter what it is!
    Great post, Joanne! Again!

    1. I think expectations are the biggest hang up when it comes to prayer. It is hard to turn things over when you are asked to just “believe”. But I do think that letting go is one of the best things we can do. Thank you for your comment! xo Joanne

  2. Our sermon at Mass this morning was all about prayer – a coincidence – I think not. Every once in a while I think I need a reminder to let go and let God speak. I absolutely believe that He answers prayers, perhaps not with the response that we wanted, but He answers! Thanks for the wonderful blog Joanne!

  3. My goodness, I see what you mean about prayer on Pinterest; astonishing. I am not very diligent about prayer as a time set apart. I try to live in a prayerful manner which means, I think, feeling that God is beside me, more or less, and talking isn’t always necessary. “Be still, and know that I am God, and I am here beside you”. Works fine until suddenly a crisis is upon me and then it’s panic mode,”Help help, save me, save me” Oh dear!

    1. I am not diligent about time set apart either. And I feel the same; I try to live in a prayerful manner.
      I think God is used to those panicky prayers of us all. I know I am guilty of them too! Thank goodness s(he) understands us. Blessings, Joanne

  4. I am on the same page as you. I pray for little things and big things, but only after giving God the praise for all things. I lay it done and leave it in His hands. I have done a prayer journal in the past and dated my prayers. Looking back months or years later you can see how it orchestrated it all, working behind the scenes, for His glory and our benefit and joy. He loves us….after all.

  5. Hi Joanne, amazing I read this in the morning after I said my prayers. It was very thought provoking for me. My favorite prayer is “The St. Francis of Assisi” prayer. I think it is beautiful. It gives me strength and I try to think of it throughout the day. . Anyway, I do think God works on our prayers. Sometimes we just have to be patient. God is good!

    1. Thank you for sharing your blog. I am very grateful to be a loyal reader. Your posts are very insightful & meaningful to me! They help to make me a better person.!

  6. I love this post, Katherine. I began a gratitude journal a year ago in May. It became also an affirmation journal, and I have seen results of it. However, I still struggle with desperation sometimes, and that can be a detriment. Jesus summed up answered prayer in Mark 11:22-24…I think that believing we have already received is the part most of us get tangled in. As you said, letting go, is important..with the knowledge that we will have what we say. So whatever we believe we receive, we will have. I never knew this growing up. the church I grew up in never mentioned Mark 11…hmmm..I wonder why.

    Blessings for a wonderful prayer life,
    Marianne xo

    1. Hello Marianne! I too struggle with frustration and desperation at times. The difference is I now have a true faith, one that will see me through in times of trouble (as with my mother months ago).
      I love that you are keeping a gratitude journal. I did that years ago and it changed my perspective on things. I am considering a prayer journal and that may just be the next step for me.
      Thank you as always for stopping by! xo

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