Sunday, March 27

Why I Believe: Prayer

"I begin by saying, 'Dear Heavenly Father.' 
I thank Him for blessings He sends.
Then humbly I ask Him for things that I need,
In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen."

Prayer has always been a huge part of my life. Some of my earliest memories were kneeling in a circle with my family, praying for the health of a family member, blessings of comfort, safety before embarking on a trip, strength from a meal, or peace and good sleep before going to bed.

As the years have gone by, though, prayer has become much more than just a habit... or even something that is part of my life. It has become the centerpiece of my relationship with God and the tie that binds me to Him.

When I lose my keys and need to find them, I pray. "Dear Father, I need to find my keys so that I can ..." Within moments, I find them - even if I began searching long before I prayed.

When I'm having a rough day, I pray. "Dear Father, please help me get through this day. Help me feel loved and worthwhile." And as the day goes on, I see and feel His presence all around me.

When I need direction, I kneel and pray. "Dear Father, I don't know what to do. There are so many different choices... so many paths to take. Please, help me know Thy will." And He takes the chance to teach me His will in my life... and helps me know what I can do better.

Prayer gives me direction, hope, and faith. But the greatest things I've learned in prayer came when I asked deep questions about my life... my purpose... my trials and my blessings. Why me? Who am I? What is my personal purpose in life? Why am I attracted to guys instead of girls? Why am I a member of the Church when so many others aren't?

As I've turned to the Lord and honestly asked Him those questions, I've learned the truth of the statement in James. "if any... lack wisdom, let him ask of God... and it shall be given him." Sometimes it takes years for me to understand the answers that come. But they always come. And when they do, they change me forever. Every prayer I pray is heard and answered from on high.

The God of the Universe listens to my questions. He helps me to understand principles of faith. He moves me to repentance and opens doors for opportunities to bless others around me. No matter what I have done, He is there for me, at my side. He answers my each and every humble prayer, no matter how small and insignificant it may seem. If it's important to me, it's important to the Lord. And that's why I believe.

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