Proof that prayer matters
You may wonder if reading, studying spiritual ideas, and listening to God each day matters.
Consider this: Firefighters know that they must be ready, when called upon, to respond to a fire. So, too, a Christian must have spiritual nutriment each day by studying God’s Word and praying for himself or herself. One must daily cultivate a clear understanding of the reality of spiritual being and be alert to recognize and mentally discard material beliefs that have no foundation in Truth. The Bible says in Romans: “Now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light” (13:11, 12).
What is quiet time with our heavenly Father? It’s prayer that affirms that right now I am one with my true source, God, infinite Love. In addition, I must realize that there is no other power—no power to separate me from that infinite Love. Paul tells us in Romans 8:38, 39 that no material circumstance can separate us from God as His spiritual reflection—no matter what that circumstance may be!
Our daily spiritual study and prayer are very important and far-reaching.
The opening verses of the 91st Psalm in the Bible say: “He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust” (verses 1, 2). That “place” the psalm speaks of is the consciousness of our heavenly Father-Mother God and of our being at one with Him. Once I have prayed, I then need to listen for guidance or ideas that are coming from God as the day progresses.
These Bible verses became real to me when I owned a dairy/convenience store. One morning, before opening the store, I had spent an hour reading the Christian Science Bible Lesson, pondering the scriptural passages and corresponding selections from the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy. During that time I had prayed that I was loved and cared for as a child of God.
Not more than half an hour after I had put my books away and opened the store, I was held up at gunpoint by two armed young men. I gave them the money from the cash register, but all the while I was affirming that God was loving all of us at that moment. One of the men said, “Shoot him!” And I responded: “No, you don’t want to do that. God is loving and protecting both of us right now.” The man again said, “Shoot him!” But the other man, whom I addressed directly, said: “No, I won’t. Let’s get out of here.” I immediately realized that all of us were being protected.
In looking back, I realized that my spiritual vision, my spiritual intuition, was clear at that moment because of my studies and prayers that morning. There had been no prejudice in my thought during the incident. No hate. Just trust that we were all being protected. The eye-to-eye contact that I had with that young man, with true care in my heart, and those words I’d so freely spoken, were a saving grace. Not only was I protected, but the young man was protected from committing a deadly crime.
So our daily spiritual study and prayer are very important and far-reaching. We may not yet fully grasp that our willingness to spend quiet time in study and prayer each day is a blessing to ourselves and others. But it is.