Prayer is one of those wonderful things that can be done by yourself, with loved ones or with the competent and caring leadership of a Christian preacher. From an early age, we are taught by our parents and by our church’s ministers the virtues and basic principles of prayer. At Sunday School, our teachers show us the way to pray; and at home, our parents help guide our bedtime prayers. Prayer is a way for us to communicate with God and to convey our wishes and hopes to Him. In times of solitude, we can look to prayer for solace. When we are dining or celebrating with our family members, we may join hands and say a prayer of grace. On Sundays when we are in the chapel, we accept the leadership of our preacher to guide the entire congregation in corporate prayer.

Similar to how a violin player may make beautiful music, prayer is somewhat of a similar blessing and practice. A conductor leads a symphony in glorious rhythm, and a church’s preacher holds the responsibility and privilege of organizing a congregation’s voice and faith in an equally harmonious wave of prayer. By assessing the emotions, moods and needs of a church’s membership, a pastor brings together a group of people in prayer support of various needs. The preacher has the choice of praying for an individual, a pressing current event, the well being of the church itself or simply in recognition of the glory of God or Christ Jesus.

At the Christian Prayer Center, it is our belief that by posting a prayer request, a Christian can receive the blessings of thousands of other Christians and experience the same type of connection with God that a single preacher may bring. A preacher brings his experience, knowledge, wisdom and faith to a prayer; and when we gather in large groups, a similar miracle can occur. With the supervision and guidance of a preacher, these group prayer requests can see greater success. A preacher often can give advice on the types of things people should be praying for, absolve them of sins and make sure their expectations are realistic and godly. A good minister will not put his faith and support behind a request that wishes harm upon another, for example.

In many cases, the pastor of a church may not be able to tell a parishioner what to pray for at all. As the Bible states, this must sometimes come from God above: “In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express” (Romans 8:26).

The Spirit is often the only One who can tell us what to pray for and when, but the pastor can help us formulate our words. The pastor has the ability and resources to bring our needs in front of a large audience, in effect elevating our prayers. A good preacher can translate what God has brought to the individual and put it into simpler, more focused terms. As always, the methods and beliefs of Christian preachers differ greatly; and in the end, it is the responsibility of each Christian to accept or deny the guidance of his or her church’s preacher. Feel God’s touch, maintain your faith, accept His comfort, and prayer will remain the wonderful gift God has blessed each and every one of us with–regardless of our access to a large group or a respected preacher.

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