Does prayer really work?
The bigger question is whether God is in control? Absolutely. Jesus is fully in control (Mt 28:18), and the primary way that He works is through intercession (Heb 7:25). He asks of the Father, and He pours out of His Spirit (Jn 14:16). He teaches us to pray (Mt 6:9) and pours out His Spirit to help us pray (Rom 8:26). His call to prayer is His call to partner with Him in establishing His kingdom upon the earth. Intercession doesn’t sit alongside the great commission - it stands at it’s very heart! When faced with the harvest, Jesus doesn’t first send out his disciples - He first teaches them to pray (Mt 9:38). Surely that’s why every great move of God throughout history was prepared for and sustained by prayer.
So how do we pray?
Our unity and confidence in prayer together rests on knowing and agreeing with His will (1 Jn 5:14). We pray with this faith and boldness when we’re rooted in what He has promised in His word and by His Spirit. We set ourselves to contend in prayer with perseverance for justice (Lk 18:7) and the breaking in of His kingdom (Mt 6:10), and above all for the church - for a spirit of wisdom and revelation (Eph 1:17), for an abounding of love (Phil 1:9), and not least Jesus’ own prayer (Jn 17:21) that we might be one so that the world might believe.
Whatever you’re doing today, you can be building God's kingdom by praying in agreement with His word. Choose a prayer from the Bible and let it be your prayer throughout the day.