How would we act if our prayers were offered to God confidently, trusting that God will respond so much more generously than any earthly parent (Luke 11:13)? Perhaps I wouldn’t just sit back and wait for God to answer but would start moving, get to work, actually start living into the reality of what I’ve prayed for. So rather than pray for someone who is lonely, maybe I’d go visit. Rather than pray for an end to violence, maybe I’d campaign against the legality of military-grade semi-automatic weapons, or protest when police use unnecessary force, or go visit the police station to tell officers that I’m grateful for their service and pray for their safety. And so forth. - David Lose, president of Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia
Jesus, and the entire Bible with him, teach prayer as jawboning [to influence or pressure through strong persuasion]. Abraham haggles with God like a merchant in a bazaar (Genesis 18). Moses makes God repent (Exodus 32). God, it appears, wants relationship, not unapproachable authority and power. God, it seems, is creating history with us, alongside us, and wants our input. When we pray, we are to be totally energized beings staking everything on God's future for the world.
- Walter Wink, professor of biblical interpretation at Auburn Theological Seminary
The Scriptures: (click or hover over links to see this Sunday's readings)