Prayer changes things. From Abraham’s plea to save Sodom to Jesus’ cry for forgiveness of others on the cross, we see the willingness of God to listen. God invites us to talk to Him, to share with Him our fears, worries, struggles and heartaches. Because when we do, God tells us He will act.

The COVID-19 pandemic has left no life unscathed in the UK. The national health crisis caused by the severity of illness for many has pushed our healthcare system and those who work within it to breaking point. The consequences of the resulting lockdowns are wide-ranging and, for many, catastrophic.

Many businesses are unsustainable. Unemployment is booming. Children’s education has been severely impacted. Families have been separated. The vulnerable have been left exposed. For many, experiencing isolation and uncertainty has led to an overwhelming sense of hopelessness as we see statistics indicate the rise in divorce, domestic abuse and suicide. 

We need things to change. We need to pray. 

"If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land. 2 Chronicles 7:14"

This Friday, 13 November, the Evangelical Alliance is holding a UK day of prayer, because prayer changes things.

It seems to me, that there is a wave of prayer raising up across the UK. We have seen churches, individuals, whole denominations all answer the call to pray. God’s Spirit is at work amongst the church in the UK, reminding us that the first place change happens is on our knees before His throne of grace. 

When we pray, we encounter afresh the character of God and the heart of God. We are changed in the encounter, and through it we witness the in-breaking of God’s kingdom. Our prayers reflect Jesus’ prayer as we ask for God’s kingdom to come and for God’s will to be done, in our lives and in the world around us. Moreover, when we pray together, we answer Jesus’ prayer that we would be one so that the world would know the love of God. There is something profound about the unity of God’s people, coming together to pray through, in and despite our differences, with one accord, for God to act. 

God will act, because God’s heart is bent towards His people. We see it throughout scripture. We see it in the shortest verse of the Bible, Jesus wept”. Within those two words, in that moment in front of His friend’s tomb, surrounded by grief and mourning and loss, Jesus showed the heart of God. He was moved with compassion. He joined in with the lament of those around Him. He was present.

Throughout the Bible we are told of the tears of God – shed over cities, over nations, over individuals. The tears shed by the Immanuel, the with-us God, who is moved by our suffering and acts out of His compassion. 

We cannot doubt the pain of God as He witnesses the suffering people are experiencing right now. Pain He bore as He took our sin and our brokenness upon Himself on the cross. And we should not doubt the Spirit’s ability to move when we respond to His call to pray. Because prayer changes things. 

This Friday, will you pray? Will you raise your voice to God and ask for the nations to be healed? Will you be amongst the thousands of us, who, with one voice, are crying out to God to move. 

Go to eauk​.org/​d​a​y​o​f​p​rayer to find out more.