Why do you pray? How often do you pray? Do you believe that your prayers make a difference? Does God change His mind when His people pray? In other words, what is your core belief about prayer? There are examples of prayer throughout the entire Bible, beginning with God’s calling out to Adam and Eve in Genesis 3. God initiated a conversation with them, as He had been doing since their creation. Real prayer is a dialogue between a human being and God Himself – a connection that allows you and me to articulate what is on our mind and heart and to hear from God. It is the process and privilege through which we come to know the triune God and to be known by Him. It is ultimately for God’s glory and also for our benefit. Yes, there will always be mystery behind the reality that God knows everything and yet he not only desires, but commands us to express our feelings, our requests, our anxieties, and our hopes to Him. The amazing promise in the Bible is that He listens to us and He grants the desires of our hearts.
Evidently Hezekiah was one of the remarkable kings of Judah who “did what was right in the eyes of the Lord and trusted in the God of Israel.” Isn’t it interesting that Isaiah seemingly interrupts his warnings about judgment with this biographical story of a king who knew when and how to pray? He was also humble enough to call in Isaiah for advice and wise counsel. The subsequent demise of the Assyrian king and his great army was inevitable. It is a great illustration of the sovereignty of the living God who will not allow His name and His glory to be diminished by man. In His own perfect time and in His own way, God did what He had promised to do to save His people and to destroy their enemy, the Assyrians. He miraculously answered the prayer of Hezekiah.
What do you do when the enemy seems very formidable and the future looks quite uncertain? Do you believe the old saying, “Prayer changes things”? Or should it even more strategically say, “Prayer changes me”? Or both? God miraculously did answer the prayer of Hezekiah.