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The Purpose of Prayer

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posted on Sep, 10 2010 @ 09:58 PM
I'll make this one a little shorter. What exactly is the 'purpose' of prayer?

I have always seen the purpose to be one of praise and glorification but also one of request. Am I wrong on this one? I know that it's seen as improper to ask God for material goods or wealth but I seem to remember Jesus himself saying that it is alright to ask for guidance and help with important issues.

any thoughts?

posted on Sep, 10 2010 @ 10:16 PM
reply to post by AidanK

In my opinion the purpose of prayer is much more advanced than we think. For example national anthems can be called prayers, what do prayers do in nation wise? Why do we have national anthems, etc..

If you can answer that question, and see how important it is, then maybe you can come closer to the answer you are looking for in regards to GOD..

posted on Sep, 10 2010 @ 10:20 PM
Watch "Fiddler on the Roof". Pay particular attention to the way that Tevye has his "conversations" with the Lord.

I've become convinced in the past six months that THAT is the purpose of prayer. A means by which our relationship with God becomes the forefront of our minds. Not a stilted "give me this, give me that", but a casual talk, where we discuss what we're thankful for, what we'd like from God, and what's going on that we're concerned about.

It helps to focus what is really important to us, and what we're concerned about.

posted on Sep, 10 2010 @ 10:31 PM
Prior to my move away from Christianity, I wondered about prayer as well. There was something that bothered me in terms of how so many people would pray in a manner that seemed mechanical, routine, and lacking passion or desire. I suppose an example of what I am talking about would be when I get together with extended family and we say the Lord's Prayer before eating. That prayer never held any particular spiritual or emotional meaning for me, and given the way everyone says it so mechanically, I wouldn't be surprised if it has become a matter of just going through the motions.

So, having explained the mentality I had as I would ponder the purpose of praying, hopefully my conclusion will make more sense. Considerable time and experience at church, on retreats, and with others in fellowship allowed me to realize that the prayers that felt satisfying and fulfilling were the ones that were spontaneous and motivated not only by my own needs and desires, but my wanting to enjoy that personal spiritual experience and relationship with God.

I eventually reached a point where the vast majority of my praying came in the form of me talking to God as though he was there with me. An invisible observer likely would have considered me to be at least a little bit on the strange side. But I often felt as though my prayers, chatter, and even singing were far more productive than anything I'd done prior to going to the more personal approach.

I also felt that a person should not worry about what others think about how they pray or what they pray for. That is a personal and spiritual matter which is for the individual to determine. As long as it is comfortable, satisfying, and uplifting, then I say go for it. Remember, with prayer, it's just you and God. Yuck it up, sing, recite hymns, read poems, read out of the what comes to you.

edit on 10-9-2010 by John_Q_Llama because: (no reason given)

posted on Sep, 11 2010 @ 08:53 AM
reply to post by John_Q_Llama

It has always been my view that The Lord's Prayer was intended not to be the actual prayer but the format to which we give ours the content being entirely up to you. And yes I would agree that while yes it is ok to ask for those things we would like to have and desperately want and that yes God will give them they are meant to grow that relationship with God closer. To bring your mind to the things that God would have you do, to learn his purpose for you. It functions much in the same way as the parent-child relationship.

posted on Sep, 11 2010 @ 10:54 AM
My prayer life is my relationship with my Lord.

I seek help, guidance and protection, always protection. I ask for blessings in the lives of my loved ones and sometimes in the lives of others who are less known or beloved of me. I ask that my needs be met, I try not to ask for 'things'. And often, I ask for the Lord's will be done, in my life and in the world.

Sometimes, when I feel my faith is weak and acknowledge that I am not a very good Christian, I will try to pray 'properly' and attempt the Lords Prayer but it rarely works! I have become accustomed to just talking to the Lord, resonating within that communion and so recitation becomes meaningless! So now I've decided to forget the Lords Prayer for the time being.

Sometimes, last thing at night, I will say a child's prayer. I am often asleep before I have finished it!

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