What are the reasons why people pray? - James Bell

When you pray, what do you pray for? Good health, healing, forgiveness, loved ones?

These are some things for which we pray.

I think there are many reasons that cause people to pray, and not all of them are valid in the eyes of God. Those who are not saved tend to think of prayer only when bad things happen, and some do not pray then, either.

When a person who is not saved prays, he must first pray the sinner's prayer to be heard. That is, he must repent of his sins and put his belief and trust in God through the Lord Jesus Christ. This results in establishing a relationship with God and with the Savior, Jesus Christ.

Romans 10:9 and 10 clearly tells us this truth: "If you confess with your mouth, Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes resulting in righteousness and with the mouth one confesses resulting in salvation."

In 1st John 1:9, we are told, "If we confess our sins, God is faithful and just and will forgive our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness." Romans 10:13 says, "Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved." When we are saved, we become a child of God, and He will hear our prayers and answer -- if they are in His Will.

In a recent survey, people were asked the reasons why people pray, and 72 percent said, "We should pray for the well-being of others." A full 60 percent said, "We should pray for forgiveness," and 21 percent said, "We should pray for material things."

This last group probably makes up the popular, "Name it and claim it" group of believers. I read recently that there are some 5,000 religions or religious groups, all claiming to be Christian. It is my belief that most of these are not true churches, of whom Christ is the head. I believe, instead, that they are well-meaning groups who have been misled by men who have distorted the Holy Bible, by either adding to, or taking away from, the Holy Scriptures.

Actually, all Christians should spend time in prayer to God daily. One must make time for devotional talks with the Lord. The more you make time for God daily, the more meaningful time becomes. Time is essential for Christian growth. Colossians. 1:9-11 says, "For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of His will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding. We pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please Him in every way, bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to His glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience and joy."

This time of prayer and devotion will bring peace and perseverance to your life. Philippians 4:6-7 says; "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your request to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Proverbs 15:8 says, "The Lord detests the way of the wicked but the prayer of the upright pleases Him."

As a Christian, I hope you already have a quiet time with God every day. If not, give God a try and see if He will not bless you and answer your prayers. If you are not a Christian, I pray you will repent of your sins and put your belief in Jesus Christ.

He will enrich your life as you follow His ways and grow in the knowledge of the Bible and in the way He wants you to live for Him. Trust in Him today, and allow Him to stretch your mind and to lead you in the right pathways of life.

You will never be sorry, and will wonder why you waited so long to accept Jesus as your Savior. I pray you will.