When we Pray
One in two adults in the UK pray, according to a recent nationwide poll by ComRes on behalf of the agency Tearfund. Even among those that say they are not religious, one in five say that they pray, suggesting that prayer is still important to many people. Among those who pray, most say that they are likely to pray in a crisis. The next most common reasons cited by those who pray is because they believe in God, or because they believe that prayer makes a difference. Popular topics of prayer among UK adults who say they pray, are family, followed by thanking God, praying for healing and for friends. These findings on prayer reveal a strong belief in the power of prayer to bring about positive change. Among those who pray, at least fifty percent agree that God hears their prayers and two in five agree that prayer changes the world. Praying also makes people feel better, with many who do so most likely to say they feel reassured or hopeful after having prayed.
As a vicar it is encouraging to see that prayer is still an important part of life for many people. Observing many in our community I also know that the most common known prayer is the Lord’s Prayer. Three years ago an invitation from the Archbishops of Canterbury and York known as: ‘Thy Kingdome Come’ has grown into an annual international call to prayer. Between the period from Ascension (30th May) to Pentecost (9th June) Christians around the world are invited to pray for more people to come to know Jesus. Here in Copthorne at St John’s we will also be joining this and will offer a range of prayer suggestions, events and activities (see also the ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ on page 7 in this issue). The most simple suggestion is perhaps to set your alarm clock at midday, to pause for moment and to pray the Lord’s Prayer.
A few years ago I received a letter that said,
“It is impossible to overstate the life-transforming power of the Lord’s Prayer… It is a prayer that is reassuring enough to be on the lips of the dying and yet dangerous enough to be banned in cinemas. It is famous enough to be spoken each day by billions in hundreds of languages and yet intimate enough to draw us ever closer into friendship with Jesus Christ. It is simple enough to be memorised by small children and yet profound enough to sustain a whole lifetime of prayer. When we pray it with sincerity and with joy, there is no imagining the new ways in which God can use us to his glory…”
If you are someone who can relate to this, why not join in with Thy Kingdome Come? You can do this locally here in Copthorne or wherever you may find yourself. www.thykingdomcome.global