Prayer: What is it and why is it important for us to pray
A simple definition of prayer is that it is a solemn request for help or an expression of thanks to God.
Pastor Errol Grey of the Mount Zion Apostolic Church in Beckford, Kraal, Clarendon, shared his thoughts with Family and Religion on the issue.
"Prayer is a connection between you and God. That's why the Bible says men (and women) are to always pray and not faint. Prayer gets you closely connected with God because the Bible declares that when the devil sees the weakest saint go down on his knee, he trembles. So it is very important that we pray lest we be left open and will be more likely to yield to the temptations of the devil. So when we pray, we open that connection between ourselves and God that we need something."
prayer is power
Pastor Grey further explained that prayer is power and whatever you can't overcome, you take it to the Lord in humble supplication.
"In his arms, He will take you and shield you and there you will find comfort so we are to always pray and not faint because prayer changes things."
He stressed that we should reverence our Creator and show Him that we acknowledge Him so we should not only pray when we are in trouble or in need. "You should pray because you know there is a God who gave you life and is sustaining you so you are obligated to pray."
"St Matthew chapter 6 says when we pray, we are not to be like the hypocrites who pray in public with their hands lifted up and their voices heard on high. Instead, we should pray in secret, because he that prayeth in secret shall be rewarded openly," he said.
Pastor Grey also cautioned against praying 'bad prayer'.
"God heareth not sinners' prayers, so if a person prays for bad things to happen to another, God will not answer that prayer. So if you're going to pray in that direction, don't bother because that prayer will just be in vain."
St John 9 verse 31 says: "Now we know that God heareth not sinners, but if any man be a worshipper of God and doeth His will, him He heareth."
"My understanding of that verse of scripture is that God will not give a listening ear, much more to answer a prayer from someone praying for something bad to happen to another. The Bible tells us in Psalms 66:18 that if you have iniquity in your heart the Lord will not hear you. God will answer your prayer when you pray with a sincere heart. You just have to pray and wait on the Lord.