Toronto Raptors point guard Jeremy Lin has reflected on power and importance of prayer, explaining that prayer "acknowledges that He is God and we are not," "brings necessary humble surrender into our lives," and "intimacy in our relationship with God."
In a recent email sent to his prayer group, the 30-year-old athlete said he wanted share "something that's been on my heart."
"The one thing I've been reminded of recently is that prayer is more for us than for God," he said. "God's all-powerful and doesn't 'need' our prayers, but He really appreciates when we pray."
Lin admitted that after he prays, he sometimes feels like he's done God and others a favor by praying. But in reality, prayer affects the individual more than it impacts God.
"It acknowledges that He is God and we are not, it brings necessary humble surrender into our lives and it simply brings intimacy in our relationship with God," Lin said, adding: "For real that's a trip if you really think about it -- we can communicate with the creator of this universe whenever we want!"
"At the end of the day, God wants loving relationship and prayer fosters that! Reminding myself that prayer is for me and not for God has given me a different perspective," he shared.
The former Brooklyn Net quoted an anonymous person who once told him, "I don't have a specific answer to my prayers, but I have noticed God answering me in a different way I expected; He's promoting change in me. And maybe that's the greater miracle in praying, God might not only shift our circumstances, but also shift ourselves, our perspective, and our heart."
"Very well-said," the NBA star added. "Hope that encourages you and I to continue being faithful in prayer."
Previously, Lin challenged fellow Christians to commit to praying daily until the end of the NBA playoffs.
"I've been heavily challenged personally to pray more often and more boldly. So that's why I decided to start a prayer movement with whoever will pray alongside me during the 2019 NBA Playoffs."
Lin acknowledged that most people are probably thinking, "Jeremy just wants us all to pray that the Raptors win a championship."
"Yes and no," he admitted. "Yes because my selfish flesh really really really wants that. But no because recently I've been learning to put God's kingdom above mine. In fact, as a follower of Him, I should be fully devoted to building God's kingdom."
"In all honesty, I don't know if I'll even play, how much I'll play, how many games we will win or how far we will go," he continued. "But I will fight to be a faithful steward with whatever God gives me - and right now, that's my heart to pray and for the 11,191 (and counting) prayer warriors that I can encourage to pray with me."
In 2014, Lin introduced the prayer group to fans which sends an email of prayers to those who subscribe on his website. In a later interview with the Los Angeles Times, Lin said his spiritual life is a big part of his game, though he had to learn to surrender everything to God in order to find peace on the court.
"When I was a rookie, I put myself through mental torment," he admitted. "I can't do that anymore. So now I'm just growing more as a person spiritually and just learning to surrender it all. It gives me a lot of peace, man."