Prayer Changes You

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“When you are praying, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do; for they think that they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him” (Matthew 6:7-8).

“Merely to repeat a phrase mechanically as a parrot does is of no use at all. … We do not have to create good, for it already exists eternally in the fact of the Omnipresence of God.” —Emmet Fox

When you pray it is important to remember that prayer changes you, not God. God, the Creative Life Force, is always in full action. Nothing you say will cause God to act more aggressively or more precisely in your life. Prayer is the process of aligning yourself with the action of God.

If you stood on the upper rim of a canyon wall and prayed that gravity would enable you to spread your arms and glide to the canyon floor, you know this would never happen. The law of gravity, which is present, active, and fully complete, would not permit it. You could, however, soar to the bottom using a hang glider. The act of understanding and cooperating with existing laws enables you to behave in ways that put you in harmony with these laws.

When Jesus points out that the Father knows what we need even before we ask, he is indicating that a lavish abundance has been provided for each one of us. We are to go within with the attitude that that which we seek has already been provided and our prayer work is to be a process of opening our mind to this natural abundance. We sense a need and we ask God to fulfill the need according to our understanding. Our real need is a deeper understanding of what God is trying to do through us. To say with understanding, I am open and receptive to God’s perfect will puts you in a receptive state of mind that does not require a constant battery of affirmations. Your needs are met on the spiritual level now. Be open to this truth and your external life will begin to reflect this deeper reality as well.

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