The Prayer God Values
A medical journal reported a scientific experiment in which a group of cardiologists in San Francisco divided people who were admitted to the ICU into two groups. Only one group was prayed for. Those prayed for were asked for permission to give their first name to three prayers who would agree to pray five minutes daily for one week.
After 200 people were entered into the study, they broke the code to compare how they did. Those who were prayed for five minutes daily did significantly better than those who were not prayed for. They had fewer complications, needed less antibiotics, and had fewer deaths.
One of the greatest surprises in Heaven may be how faithfully God answered our prayers. Even when our consistent prayers have not been satisfactory to us--God values them. He values faithfulness.
Cornelius prayed faithfully and may often have seemed to be only saying repetitious words. But one day God sent an angel to tell him, "Your prayers...have come up as a remembrance before God" (Acts 10:4).
When I was a girl, one of the good men in our church testified that he had had a difficult time praying. He kept going to his regular prayer time, but it felt as if his prayers were not being heard.
Then one day, God's presence was there again, and it seemed that God said, "I saw all of those times you prayed. I heard you even when you had no spirit of prayer, and I'm answering your prayers because you were faithful."
"To the faithful you show yourself faithful," the psalmist reminded God. (Psalm 18:25) Satan fights our having a regular prayer time because he knows the results of faithful praying.
Thank you, dear Jesus, for faithfully rewarding all of our efforts to pray.
"Keep on asking, and you will be given what you ask for. Keep on looking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened" (Matthew 7:7 NLT).