Sometimes I wonder if we’d just like to give up on God. When things aren’t going well and we’ve asked, and we’ve asked and we’ve asked God for this one thing—just this one thing God—and it never comes, sometimes we just throw our hands up in the air and give up. “Why does it matter if I pray at all, it never gets answered anyway?” We stand at the edge of the loved-one’s hospital bed, dreading the thought of losing them. And we pray for a miracle that never comes and the loved one slips away into death. We look around us; we see the evil in the world, the confusion and the chaos. We hear the prayers on Sunday for peace. But it never comes! Isn’t God listening, doesn’t he care? Or maybe we give up on God a different way. We become cynical fatalists. We think: if God knows what’s going to happen anyway, then why bother praying about it. He’s just going to do what he wants anyway. And you add to all of this the criticism and hatred of a sinful world and maybe you wonder if prayer is even worth it.

So we give up on praying. But what are we really giving up? Prayer is something believers need to do. But a broken prayer life - a life where we give up on praying, a life where our prayers are just selfish, a life where our prayers are nothing but thoughtless babbling—that kind of broken prayer life is evidence of a broken faith. When we give up on praying, have we not also given up on God?

If this is you—and who of us hasn’t been there—then you know why you need a Savior. You know you need a God who is patient with you and who cares about you. You need a God who cares about justice and right and wrong. And our God, the one true God, sent Jesus to take care of that. All the wrong of this world, the wrong things we do, the wrong prayers, the wrong thoughts—all the sin was punished on the cross. Justice was carried out when God punished Jesus in your place.

And so Jesus becomes your prayer to God. The Bible calls Jesus your mediator—your go-between, between you and God. Jesus goes to God on your behalf to show God the sacrifice he made for your sin. He prays to God offering him his perfect life which covers over our sins. He has the ear of his Father to tell him that all sin has been paid, that you are covered in the robe of his perfect life. Jesus is your prayer of forgiveness that God answered with a definitive yes.

So now God listens to you when you pray to him. He hears you because you are one of his chosen ones. God has chosen you out of this world, before time even began, to be his own. You are his child; of course God will listen to you. That’s his promise and God would never lie to us.

So pray! Don’t give up. The Lord answers your prayers. When you pray to God, you don’t bring your prayers to him because of the answers he gives. That would make God into some kind of magic genie. So why pray to him? Because he has promised to hear and to answer you. It is his promise that invites us--even more--that compels us to pray and never give up.

For what it's worth--pray!