The Scriptures are full of references to the power and necessity of prayer:
Luke 18:1 (NRSV) — 1 Then Jesus told them a parable about their need to pray always and not to lose heart.
Luke 21:36 (NRSV) — 36 Be alert at all times, praying that you may have the strength to escape all these things that will take place, and to stand before the Son of Man.”
Romans 12:12c (NRSV) — Persevere in prayer.
Ephesians 6:18a (NRSV) — 18 Pray in the Spirit at all times in every prayer and supplication.
Colossians 4:2a (NRSV) — 2 Devote yourselves to prayer.
1 Thessalonians 5:17 (NRSV) — 17 pray without ceasing,
1 Peter 4:7c (NRSV) — discipline yourselves for the sake of your prayers.
Jeremiah 29:12 (NRSV) — 12 when you call upon me and come and pray to me, I will hear you.
In listening to those passages of scripture, we hear a clear call to pray. Paul urges his readers to “pray all kinds of prayers.” So we pray prayers we make up and we pray prayers others have written and composed. Of the composed prayers, the one that is best known and most often repeated in the Christian community is the Lord’s Prayer which comes to us from the words of Jesus. Many of us like prayers and use prayers that do not have a biblical origin – St. Francis’ prayer, “Lord, make me an instrument of your love.” Two very popular prayers of our times are often recited by children – “Now I lay me down to . . .” and “God is good, God is . . .”
But there is another prayer that has been prayed by millions of people multiple times. It probably is the second most said prayer of our time. Countless lives have been impacted as God has answered the prayer and the pray-ers have received the answer. This prayer is what we call the Serenity Prayer.