There are varied answers to “What is prayer?”, depending on who has influenced you. Religious customs shape the prayers of most people.
But what if it is God himself who teaches a person about prayer? What if it is God who influenced us, instead of people?
When God is the influencer, prayer is:
Listening and understanding, in place of solicitation.
Informal and constant. It is anytime, anywhere.
Prayer, His way, is:
Deciding to believe what God says, in place of discouragement and fear in dire circumstances.
It is learning who He is while engaging with Him in daily life.
It is conversation, just as we converse with humans.
To not listen in conversation, especially in the presence of one who is all-knowing, is the stuff of fools.
Realizing He knows your thoughts as soon as you think them. It is acknowledgement that He knows.
It is learning from HIm what to do in the thing you’ve acknowledged together.
This conversation and counseling from God is possible because:
The gap we imagined between us — He in Heaven and we on Earth — has been bridged by Jesus’s sacrifice of life, and by the presence of His Holy Spirit on Earth.
As unlikely as it seems, and as difficult as it is to absorb, He longs to partner with each of us, to engage with us every hour of every day, and to help and empower us in the details of our lives.