(Am now following M’Cheyenne’s schedule for Bible reading in my quiet times. If you would like the schedule, shoot me an email!)
Part of my quiet time was Genesis 18, at the end of which, Abraham pleads with God to let Sodom off the hook if he finds even ten righteous people. If you know the end of the story, you know that in fact God does not find ten righteous people and Sodom and Gomorrah are destroyed.
That’s not the point of this exchange. Did God know that when he was speaking with Abraham? Certainly. Does this minimize the fact that God acquiesces to Abraham even though he knows the futility? Absolutely not!
The thing is, God listens. He listens to our prayers and our prayers have an effect on him. People often tell us that prayer is more for ourselves than for God, but this is much too self-centered in a false humility sort of way. God’s mercy is bountiful, and when he hears our prayers, he wants to answer.
What form the answer takes is a different topic altogether, but God’s been teaching me about the power of prayer, precisely because I’ve been neglecting it. It’s so crazy to think that God would even care to hear our prayers, but the fact is, he does. And if that doesn’t make you want to pray, then I don’t know what will.