“The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. Elijah was a human being, even as we are. He prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the land for three and a half years.” James 5:16,17 (NIV)
The American National Library of Science states: “The brain is the last and grandest biological frontier. It contains hundreds of billions of cells interlinked through trillions of connections.” Well-known Theoretical Physicist Michio Kaku adds, “Sitting on your shoulders is the most complicated object in the known universe.” At any given moment, our brains are controlling our breathing, our heartbeat, and a host of other functions within our bodies, and are simultaneously providing rapid response to myriads of stimuli. Yet for all of that, studies reveal that attempting to multi-task actually hinders both performance and production.
There is much about prayer that remains something of a mystery to the believer. It has often been said that prayer changes things, but does it actually change anything outside of the one who prays? Or is prayer more about changing our own hearts, rather than changing circumstances in the world? Does prayer really have the potential of changing things in the lives of real people?
Yes! – God’s Word makes crystal clear the absolute truth that prayer does indeed change things! Elijah’s prayer stopped the rain for three and a half years! Prayer changes things! However, it is important to note that it is not the act of praying itself, nor even the meditative mindset of prayer – It is the God to whom we pray! Ultimately, God changes things!
A cancer survivor recently commented to me that he had become absolutely mesmerized when he considered how God had worked to accomplish his recovery! God used skilled doctors to remove the cancer, caring nurses to assist the healing process, organized administrative staff to schedule appointments – and a whole host of faithful believers to pray! And in God’s perfect economy – He sovereignly used all of that to accomplish healing in a brother’s life! And each part was equally necessary in God’s grand purposes!
There is some mystery in prayer – but the God who created the brain, which regulates our entire life, is simultaneously regulating all life on planet Earth! And this sovereign God chooses to use our weak prayers to accomplish His strong purposes, for the good of His children, and for His eternal glory! Oh what a God we serve!