“Your Father knows the thing you have need of before you ask Him”(Matt 6:8). Then why ask? Very evidently our ideas about prayer and Jesus Christ’s are not the same. Prayer to Him is not a way to get things from God, but so that we may get to know God. Prayer is not to be used as the privilege of a spoiled child seeking ideal conditions to indulge his spiritual propensities. The purpose of prayer is to reveal the presence of God, equally present at all times and in every condition.
During a war many pray for the first time. It is not cowardly to pray when we are at our wits’ end. It is the only way to get in touch with reality. As long as we are self-sufficient and complacent, we don’t need to ask God for anything. We don’t want Him. It is only when we know we are powerless that we are prepared to listen to Jesus and to do what He says.
It is not so true that “prayer changes things” as that prayer changes us.
(All above quotes are from If You Will Ask: Reflections on Prayer by Oswald Chambers)