prayer: it makes a greater difference than we know

prayer - paper aeroplane - it makes a greater difference than we know - Joy Lenton

So often we think of prayer like sending flimsy paper aeroplanes into the ether, where they act like drifting darts that fail to hit their intended target. But what if we saw each prayer more as an arrow that reaches straight to the heart of God? 

Might that make a difference in our willingness to pray, and encourage our hope that all prayer is heard and answered in some way? I think so. Because the bible urges us to pray at all times and in all seasons, while it declares how our prayers can rise as fragrant incense to God’s throne above.

”Our prayers may be awkward. Our attempts may be feeble. But since the power of prayer is in the one who hears it and not in the one who says it, our prayers do make a difference.” — Max Lucado

prayer - “Any concern too small to be turned into a prayer is too small to be made into a burden.” quote (C) Corrie Ten Boom

Prayer isn’t something to be feared because of our perceived failure at it. Rather, prayer is to be welcomed as a wonderful, privileged part of our relationship with God, as we maintain an open dialogue with Him. And when we take all our worries and concerns to God, we get to experience His rest and peace.

The poem below describes the frustration we might experience when we seemingly get no answers to prayer. It also points to the biblical hope and promise we have of our prayers actually landing up where they should—straight to the loving heart of our Father God.

Paper aeroplanes

I try to shoot
paper aeroplanes
into the ether

but they fall,
floating aimlessly,
landing languidly
at my feet,

while others curve,
slither and slide
across the ceiling,

darting like flies,
getting nowhere
it seems.

I cannot see
why they don’t hit
their intended target,

pierce through layers
of fluffy cloud,
this veiled curtain

of azure blue shroud
where hope enough
exists to send them off.

I can only assume,
more and more
as time passes,

that they are too small,
deemed unworthy planes,
perhaps, tipped off

balance, somehow,
sent careening
sideways, adrift,

instead of being
faithfully received.
Yet the eyes of faith

suggest I look further,
try to see beyond
and believe

there is a place
where clouds will part,
open up for this

faithfully sent
aerial fleet,
these fragile, tentative

aeroplanes of prayer
to actually penetrate
the air, the heavens,
where they are

joyfully received above,
carefully curated,
acted upon with love.
© joylenton

prayer - Prayer is not overcoming God’s reluctance... quote (C) Martin Luther

“Prayer lays hold of God’s plan and becomes the link between His will and its accomplishment on earth. Amazing things happen, and we are given the privilege of being the channels of the Holy Spirit’s prayer.” — Elisabeth Elliot

Where has prayer made a difference in your life or the lives of those you’ve prayed for? Let’s rejoice in it together… 🙂 ❤

10 thoughts on “prayer: it makes a greater difference than we know

    • Isn’t it just? God’s great “willingness to listen and act with love” is a great blessing and wonder we should never take for granted. Bless you, James, for your thoughtful contribution here and the kind encouragement as well! 😊🙏🏻

  1. Thank you for another treasure in your words and phrases. I think of prayer as a mystery that unites us in Christ. There are those moments we are being prayed for and we sense of the presence of God deep in our spirits. . The web of prayer ties us together in love for each other. The specifics of my requests in prayer can baffle me in the long answers and confusing twists. But the power of prayer to touch another’s life I’m sure of, even if the answers don’t look much like my prayer.

    • Oh yes, Shirley, prayer is quite mysterious in how it connects and unites us to Christ and to one another. It acts like a valuable lifeline and (as you so aptly describe it) as a “web” that “ties us together in love for each other.” We can easily get lost in the labyrinth of “long answers and confusing twists” but it’s reassuring when we see visible results or hear about the way our prayers have positively impacted the lives of others. God loves to surprise us, and I think that helps us to persevere and remain hopeful and expectant in prayer. It’s a continual learning curve, and usually more about God’s plans and purposes than in getting satisfaction ourselves. Even though I guess we can all attest to receiving timely help and support, whether we’ve urgently sought it or not, because of His grace and faithfulness toward us. 😊❤

  2. Dear Joy,
    I love these words:
    “there is a place
    where clouds will part,
    open up for this
    faithfully sent
    aerial fleet,”
    because our faith truly is in the unseen, where we cannot see how those clouds will part. But HE is so faithful to receive every prayer we send His way. Just as I was reading your words here, the phone rang with a request from someone desperate to find God’s answer. OH, may we trust that He will answer every prayer we share, in His timing and in His way. Bless you dear friend. I had wanted to read this all day, but just kept getting side-tracked. God knew even the timing for my reading needed to be just now. Sending much love and hugs to you across the pond tonight, dear sister. xoxo

    • Dear Bettie, that opening gives us hope, doesn’t it? Though at times it’s just a tiny chink of light. Waiting is hard when we’re desperate for answers, long to see results or discover what step to take. Yet it will all happen “in His timing and in His way” as you have so rightly said. Even reading and responding to a blog post is subject to those things! Oh may your friend find peace of mind and holy rest and trust if answers are not forthcoming for a while. Much love and hugs returned to you across the pond, dear sister and friend. xoxo 💜

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