Prayer Changes People
…by Suzanne Taylor
What is prayer?
Prayer is an amazingly powerful tool that God has given His children to converse with Him.
I learned this truth about prayer when Teri1, a sister in the Lord, asked me to pray for a situation with her 10-year old son who was misbehaving and had a bad attitude toward her.
Joel2 was sarcastic, used language that was not acceptable, and would not do chores or his schoolwork. She told me, “I have tried every form of discipline, but he will not obey. Now I need prayer for us.”
Prayer covers the entire problem.
When I agreed to pray daily for Joel, she set the limits for me. “No matter how you pray for Joel, just don’t pray for patience for me! If you do, God will send me trials I just can’t handle.” This came from a woman who was raised in church. I was shocked.
Keeping my word, I added her son to my prayer journal. My prayer for Joel was that God would develop love in him. I asked God to give him a spirit of kindness toward his mom and everyone else. I asked God to heal and seal Joel’s heart.
I also added her to my daily prayer. I prayed for her by name, asking God to soften her heart to trust Him completely. Yes, my prayer for her included patience, because without patience she would never see the other side of this difficulty. And God in His infinite mercy granted patience to this sister!
Prayer is not a one-sided conversation.
One month later, she came to me in church and hugged me tightly. “Thank you so much for interceding for Joel. He’s turning himself around and is behaving. Well, as much as a 10-year old can behave!”
At the prompting of the Holy Spirit, I told my friend I had also prayed for God to develop patience in her. She was shocked to hear that. I laughed at the look on her face. Then we laughed together and hugged again before we sat for the service.
Understand one thing: Prayer is a meaningful discourse between the heart of God and the heart of man. Don’t set limits on your prayers. If there is a fear in your life, like the fear my friend had of praying for patience, know this…that’s exactly what you should be praying for.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart… 3 Believe in the power of God to answer prayer in the best way for you and everyone for whom you pray. 4
Suzanne Taylor is Pastor of New Beginnings Ministry ( www.newbeginmin1.org ), an online ministry dedicated to bringing together those who want to learn, share and experience more about Jesus. She is also the author of Rev’s Notes. Suzanne lives in Carmel, Maine, USA.
Footnotes : (1) Not her real name; (2) Not his real name; (3) Proverbs 3:5a; (4) Read I John 5:14-15.
Pictures : 2nd Article Photo: Woman Praying by Neely Wang/Lightstock