At the core of all of these questions and comments seems to be “to what end? What is the purpose of praying?”
After standing still I’ve determined a few things for myself. Prayer is a conversation with God – it deepens my relationship with my Father. Having a conversation means two way communication. I seek, cry out, ask, beseech, and pour out my soul as He hears, listens and answers. As I draw near to him through conversation, I am aware of His presence and direction. Through communication a relationship is strengthened. Through communication answers are given – “Yes child”; “In due time – be patient – wait upon Me”; “No, I have something else in my – plans to grow and prosper you – in ways you are not yet able to see”; “I understand you – let me carry this burden – receive My Comfort, My Peace”….
Maybe praying for others or having others pray for you is more about us – as individuals, as “the family”, as community – than it is about the request or entreating an answer. Through prayer we draw close to God – we also draw close to one another. We carry one another’s burdens. We encourage and comfort each other.
I recall a time of great darkness and loss – I had no words just emptiness – I felt distant not just from others but from the Lord. Yet prayer tethered me safely. Even when I had no words – the Sprit prayed for me. I couldn’t pray but I knew others had me wrapped in a blanket of prayer. I was covered with the comfort, encouragement, and warmth of prayer. I personally wasn’t in a place for relationship or communication – yet had relationship and communication deepen with others and my Father by being prayed for.
Psalm 17:6 - I call on you, my God, for you will answer me.
Psalm 55:17 - Evening, morning and noon I cry out in distress, and HE hears my voice.
Psalm 73:28 - but as for me, it is good to be near Go. I have made the Sovereign LORD my refuge.
Romans 8:26 - In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.
Galatians 6:2 - Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.
James 4:8 - Come near to God and He will come near to you.
James 5:16b - …and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.
John 5:14 - This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, HE hears us.
Romans 15:30 - Now I beseech you, brethren, for the Lord Jesus Christ’s sake, and for the love of the Spirit, that ye strive together with me in your prayers to God for me.