Why Pray?

May 7, 2011 § Leave a comment

Still to this day, Psalm 116 is sung or read each year at Passover celebrations in Jewish homes.  This psalm is part of a collection of psalms from 113 to 118 called “Egyptian Hallel” (Egyptian Praise) because they all focus on God’s deliverance from Egypt.  In this broader context, Psalm 116 starts with the memory of how the Lord heard the cry for mercy in the past (116:1).  Therefore, “because he turned his ear to me, I will call on him as long as I live”  (116:2).  God’s faithful deliverance in the past becomes the basis for loving God and continuously calling on Him.  It is because God first loved us and proofed to be trustworthy in never abandoning us that we keep on reaching out to God.  Later in the Psalm, it is stated in another powerful way:  “How can I repay the Lord for all his goodness to me?  I will lift up the cup of salvation and call on the name of the Lord” (116:12-13).  Continuously calling on the Lord is the way in which we repay the Lord for all his goodness, because it shows our trust that He will continue to be faithful to us now and forever.  Why pray?  Not because we can manipulate God into giving to us what we find impossible to get ourselves.  But because it is our way of showing God that we trust Him with our lives no matter what, when, and how.

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