In February, 2020, we are doing a research study on prayer. We are told that God hears our prayers and answers them. But does it actually work? If there is a God does he actually hear our prayers and give us answers to those prayers? How many prayers get answered and what kind of prayers get answered? These are just a few questions that surround the topic of prayer. We’d like to put prayer to the test! This is not a text book exercise; this is real life. We’d like to see the effects of prayer on real people in real life from all walks of life.
Here’s how the study will work:
- Have something to pray about
- Reach out to us by filling out the form and sharing your Prayer Request with us
- You will be assigned an individual from our Prayer Team that will pray for your request
- A member of our Prayer Team will keep in touch with you to see if you get an answer to your Prayer!
See below for some tips and tricks to increase the effectiveness of your prayers
Tips & Tricks for Effective Prayer
- Pray in Jesus’ name
The name of Jesus is powerful… like, really powerful! Check out these verses:
- “And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask me anything in my name, I [, Jesus,] will do it.” – John 14:13-14
- As a result God highly exalted him and gave him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow – in heaven and on earth and under the earth – and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father. – Philippians 2:9-11
- There is power in numbers
Grab a friend; meet with a prayer group; share your prayer request with other believers. The Bible has quite a few things to say about not being alone in prayer:
- “Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.” – Matthew 18:19-20
- Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! – Ecclesiastes 4:9-10
- Even the apostle Paul asks for prayer:
Now I urge you, brothers and sisters, through our Lord Jesus Christ and through the love of the Spirit, to join fervently with me in prayer to God on my behalf. Pray that I may be rescued … – Romans 15:30-31
- Pray multiple times for your request
If you’re serious about your prayer request, then you won’t just pray about it once. If you don’t care about your request, then why should God care? But God does care for you and cares deeply about the things that you need. This interesting parable compares God to an unrighteous judge. Which is weird, right? But in the story, the unrighteous judge eventually gives in to the demands of the widow. So Jesus’ point is essentially, ‘if the unrighteous judge gives in, how much more will God (who is actually righteous btw) answer those who ask him for stuff?’
- And he told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not lose heart. He said, “In a certain city there was a judge who neither feared God nor respected man. And there was a widow in that city who kept coming to him and saying, ‘Give me justice against my adversary.’ For a while he refused, but afterward he said to himself, ‘Though I neither fear God nor respect man, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will give her justice, so that she will not beat me down by her continual coming.’” And the Lord said, “Hear what the unrighteous judge says. And will not God give justice to his elect, who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long over them? I tell you, he will give justice to them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?” – Luke 18:1-8
- Have faith
Jesus speaks really boldly about believing prayer. Faith has tremendous power, and all you need, apparently, is a mustard seed’s worth!
- And Jesus answered them, “Truly, I say to you, if you have faith and do not doubt, you will not only do what has been done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and thrown into the sea,’ it will happen. And whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith.” – Matthew 21:21-22
- The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!” And the Lord said, “If you had faith like a grain of mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you.” – Luke 17:5-6
- … The prayer of a righteous person has great effectiveness. Elijah was a human being like us, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain and there was no rain on the land for three years and six months! – James 5:15-16
- Be real
This is a broader piece of advice and can have a few meanings. For example, Jesus tells us not to make prayer into a spectacle or use it as a status symbol. He also tells us to keep it simple and to the point; no need to make it sound eloquent or poetic. And above all, be humble; realize that it is God, the creator of the universe, who you are coming to when you pray.
- “And when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites. For they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, that they may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.” – Matthew 6:5-6
- “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.” – Matthew 6:7
- But [God] gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” … Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you. – James 4:6, 10
We hope these tips help you in your prayers and in your relationship with God. And we are always here to answer any questions you have or to talk with you. Just send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.