Consider, for example, the following spiritually inspirational quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson: "The wise man in the storm prays God not for safety from danger but for deliverance from fear."
My defense depends on God, who saves the upright in heart. Psalm 7: 10
Whether you pray or not, God is always listening to the silent desires of your heart. Prayer is not necessary for God to hear us. God always knows your wants and needs before you yourself are even aware of them. Prayer, however, is an important tool which allows Christians to hear God in return. The true power of prayer lies in this divine communication. Prayer allows you to quiet your mind enough to allow God to answer you, to open yourself up enough to be able to hear His guidance.
The key to finding spiritual inspiration through prayer is to focus less on asking God to change the world for you, and more on asking God to change you and help you become better able to deal with the way the world is. Many Christians unfortunately see prayer as a method of petitioning God for their desires. They focus more on asking and pleading and less on listening and following. Consider, for example, the following spiritually inspirational quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson:
"The wise man in the storm prays God not for safety from danger but for deliverance from fear."
There is nothing inherently wrong with heartfelt prayers for us and our loved ones to be safe, healthy, and happy. When tough times do befall us, however, we can gain more spiritual strength and peace by asking God to fortify our hearts and help us get through difficulty, rather than by asking Him to make the hard times disappear.
As Christians we are called to take peace and comfort in the fact that God has a plan and is always in control, but we should not feel bad for finding it difficult to surrender. Jesus Himself, being as fully human as He is divine, struggled with the role that He was assigned. Ultimately, however, He surrendered to God's will.
Learning to pray in accordance with God's will is an important step towards gaining the ability to see the answers to our prayers. Prayers are not always answered in the affirmative. Sometimes, for reasons we might not understand, the answer can be "no." Despite this, however, the goal of prayer is to achieve understanding of why God has chosen to say "yes" or "no," and to trust that only He truly knows what is best for us. This form of understanding is perfectly described in an encouraging quote from Philippians 4:6-7:
"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
By truly reaching out to God in a heartfelt manner that is first and foremost thankful for everything we already have, our prayers can be answered and our hearts can find peace. The power of prayer is not found in bending God to our will, but in finding out what God wills for us and learning to accept it.
Then King David went in and sat before the Lord. He said,
“Who am I, O Lord God, and what is my house that You have brought me this far? Yet this was comparatively insignificant in Your sight, Lord God, for You have also spoken about Your servant’s house into the distant future. Is this Your manner with man, Lord God? “What more can David say to You? You know Your servant, Lord God. Because of Your word, according to Your will, You have done all of this greatness to inform Your servant. “Therefore You are great, Lord God. There is none like You, and there is no God except You, according to everything that we have heard with our ears. And who is like Your people, like Israel—a single nation in the land, whom God went to redeem as a people for Himself, making a name for Himself by doing great and awesome things for Your land, before Your people whom You redeemed for Yourself from Egypt, a nation and its gods. You established Your people Israel as Your own people forever, and You, Lord, became their God. “Now, Lord God, confirm forever the word that You spoke regarding Your servant and his house and do as You have spoken. May Your name be magnified forever by saying, ‘The Lord of Hosts is God over Israel,’ and may the house of Your servant David be established before You. “For You, O Lord of Hosts, God of Israel, have revealed a word to Your servant, saying, ‘I will build you a house.’ Therefore, Your servant has found the courage to pray this prayer to You. Now, Lord God, You are God, and Your words are true. You have spoken this good message to Your servant. Now, be resolved and bless Your servant’s dynastic house, so that it may stand before You forever. You, Lord God, have spoken, and with Your blessing, the house of Your servant will be blessed forever.”