How Shall We Then Pray? (#452)

Everywhere you look our world is in crisis--the atrocities of ISIS, ongoing conflict and hatred in the Middle East, the battle for Ukraine, the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, the racial angst in America, harsh weather conditions, erupting volcanos and devastating earthquakes. If God gave you the power to resolve any of these crises, what would you do? How do we pray in the face of all that is going on in the world, especially if we're not focused on our own personal comfort and safety, but the unfolding purposes of God in our world? Does it matter if we do? And, how might God engage us in the power of agreed prayers with other believers? Brad joins Wayne again and neither of them foresaw where this conversation was going to go.

Podcast Links:
Kenya Update for the Outreach in West Pokot
Add your voice to our question/comment line: (805) 539-6980 or Skype us at "TheGodJourney"


  1. Very thought-provoking podcast. maybe some of this is the heart behind Paul’s remark- ‘I would that ye all speak in tongues..’ Recently in my own journey, I have noticed coming into so many situations I had preconceived notions of God’s opinion on only to find out I didn’t know ditz about it. It is so easy to do that! We are so quick to judge.

  2. I’ve been thinking about the kinds of things you guys talked about, you know the situation in Ukraine and all this other bad stuff. Where I live, often someone in the house has the TV on watching the news, and we talk quite a lot about what’s going on. For me, gets pretty distressing, especially when I find that I am trying to judge the whole world by what I see on the news.

    Last night, I was hearing all this bad news again, but with a sense of grief mixed with I think a kind of hunger that maybe God put there. I really just want to grieve. I wish I could grieve about this with other people, and in that our hearts could be turned to the Lord.

  3. I have a observation and a question. I have been mulling about this for some time and this pod cast sort of brought it back to the foreground.

    It has only been in the last century that technology has allowed a human being to see well beyond his immediate borders, and only the last few decades that we have been able to pretty much see the whole world at out fingertips. Rather than experience and deal with the circumstances of the immediacy around us, we are now distracted, inundated and overwhelmed by the pain and difficulty of the entire world. This has never happened before in the history of the world.

    If we lived 100 years ago we would not even know what was going on a few hundred miles away, and if we did, we would have heard about weeks after it occurred. We would know and face the problems in our immediate world, but not much else. For some of us, the immediate world is in complete turmoil and over our heads.

    Has technology, globalization and communication created an unrealistic perception of what God expects of us as believers in the arena of prayer?

    How much of the world are we called to pray and be concerned about?

    Are we being weighed down by something that up until 50+ years ago has never been a part of the human experience? Is today “normal” in the light of the average over the last 6000 years? Is this vast ocean of communication “good” for us?

    Perhaps much of the “weight of the world” is something we were are NOT meant to carry or be concerned about because we were actually not created to do so. Not sure hoes true that statement is. That’s what I am mulling over.

    I have not figured out how to pray for the big issues of the world. My friend’s divorce, my daughter’s poor choices in relationship, family tragedy, etc. etc. – let alone my own issues – pile up in large heap at my door step. Its all I have time to pray for and the energy to walk alongside of.

    Maybe I am just whining.

  4. Thanks Wayne and Brad for a very thoughtful podcast. I’m learning to be comfortable with saying I have no answers. What I will be doing is thinking about this conversation and also sharing with Father some of my thoughts. Recently I came across a picture and article giving information about the “leader” of ISIS. I lifted him by name before Father and slowly am learning that the false pressure of “but you have to do more!!!” can be left with Father. I also have lifted people who are victims to Father also. His love is far deeper than we can humanly comprehend. I do remember a story from WW2 when Betsie and Corrie Ten Boom were confronted with evil on a scale they had never seen, Betsie in a way that was supernaturally given to her by Father grieved for the pain and brokenness of her abusers at Ravensbruck camp. Thanks for raising the questions and the “hunger” that many of us experience. Thanks for the thoughts of others who share in this forum as well. Blessings, Sue

  5. After the Oklahoma tornado, Ricky Gervais, comedian and professed atheist, was commenting on people tweeting that they were praying for the victims, and he said he felt stupid because all he did was give money. The point, and I think this is valid, is that prayer was never meant to supersede giving and/or helping. I have been in groups that feel that they are doing some great good for one in need by praying, and yet said prayer(s) never lift a finger to aid or console those for whom they are praying.
    Is this what prayer is designed for? Obviously not, but this is common practice in today’s christianity. So, what is prayer and what is its purpose?
    Maybe prayer is more to be a time of listening to what the Father is putting on our hearts than a time of going through a list of “wants and fears.” Maybe prayer is more about coming out of it with a changed heart and less about answers to our desires. Prayer may be a means through which the Father molds our hearts into being the lovers of his creation we were intended to be. Maybe prayer was intended to move us not him. Maybe it is something designed to mold us into compassionate people. Maybe it’s not about getting God to act but about changing us into being God’s conduit for love in this earth. Maybe it is to move us into acting for those for whom we feel moved to pray; not just an exercise of bringing them before the father only to leave it in God’s hands.
    Ultimately, the highest prayer we pray for others has to be that they might come to know how much the Father really loves them. This is made most evident to them by the loving actions of those who through prayer understand this in themselves. Prayer brings the peace of knowing we’re loved, and knowing we’re loved frees us to love others. Thus the power of prayer is that those who have come to know the love of the Father are moved to introduce others to his love, and who knows how love might ripple out from us all the way to…well…Syria and beyond.

  6. I enjoyed John and Kent’s point of view . 4 of us here had a very interesting conversation about prayer this forenoon . It would Have been titled “Why do we not “pray” as a Group more often?” One thing we found out is… when we visit from our hearts We are all aware That He is a part of our conversation in a very real way. We are speaking it to Him as well as each other and listening to Him as well . There is an on going conversation in each one of our hearts with Him as well as each other and He speaks into our conversation as well . So when the conversation winds up we don’t feel the need to recap what he has been a part of neither do we want to say goodbye to Him because He is going Home with us and continueing a more personal conversation. These conversations have a life of their own and I have yet been able to predetermine what that conversation will be in an accurate way. One thing they do Have in common is they almost always start with the reality of what each one of us are being faced with today? What am I struggling with today? Many times We talk about all the things we would rather not…some times it is He Gave one of us something Awsome today and we Get to enjoy that and explore it together ! I love those times as well!! I know I am Far from where Brad and Wayne are talking about going with prayer ……. So far I do good to simply listen to what he puts on my heart and pray that. If there is nothing he puts there I Get to simply enjoy His company as I walk with Him through the day. Thanks for another great podcast! And all the comments !

  7. Another great thought-provoking conversation. Love the perspective on what it means to agree together, being an openness to the Holy Spirit and the vantage-point of others, arriving at that aha moment where we agree (and not “everybody listen to the boss because we are supposed to agree.”)

    @John, above, I too often ponder at the impact of the instant global knowledge at this point in history. As an alternative to thinking of it as more burdens to shoulder, maybe it’s a greater lever. That is, understanding it’s not my responsibility to fix the problems, I can use my awareness to pray with believing AND to get new perspectives.

    That said, I confess that I don’t watch the news, so I had to Google “ISIS” to get up to speed. I found a good non-inflammatory article that discusses ISIS and in general how these kind of extremist groups evolve. The author pointed out that initially the ideology of the group is not the main attractant, but the promise of order and justice in the midst of politically chaotic and often violent worlds. But when the group gets power, then the ideology becomes the framework for how they operate. I thought it introduced some interesting perspectives.

    Here is the link to the article:

  8. Al’s Axiom #3- Maybe the 2 or 3 gathered is God’s ideal! The maximum, not the minimum ????

  9. Thanks Brad and Wayne for that thought provoking podcast.
    Yes Ginny, me too.
    John, that is so true. I pray when Jesus puts something on my heart
    Kent, my prayer has become what you suggested in ‘Maybe prayer is more to be a time of listening to what the Father is putting on our hearts than a time of going through a list of “wants and fears.” Maybe prayer is more about coming out of it with a changed heart and less about answers to our desires.’
    Thank you Pat for the article.

Comments are closed.