There are a number of ways that our obedient service to others aids our prayers. Here are three ways:
1. Our service to others makes our prayers more powerful.
Most basic, our service to others helps us to keep our faith alive and therefore makes prayer more powerful. Let me explain: Hebrews 11:6 tells us that he who comes to God (in prayer) must believe Him (must believe that “He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him”). So then, in order to pray effectively we must have faith in God. But what is faith? Faith is not just an intellectual belief in God. Faith is not just an idea, a noun. Faith is also a verb, an action—to believe and to put to action our beliefs. Having faith in God requires that we obey Him. Hence, if we trust and believe God we will do what He tells us to do. Therefore, when we obediently serve others (as God desires us to do) we are acting out our faith; and we are also making our faith stronger and more perfect. James teaches us in James 2:18-26 that faith without works is dead, but by works faith is perfected. Therefore, when faith becomes stronger (more perfect) through our service, so does our prayers.
2. Our service to others strengthens prayer compassion.
Just as our faith is strengthened by our service, so is our prayer compassion strengthened. Every time we observe those in need and do something to help them (even if it is just praying for them) our compassion for them is watered. When God puts needy people before our eyes, and we see them and obediently serve them, He gives us more of His Spirit so that we love them more and have more of Christ’s heart to pray for them.
3. Our service to others may become the answer to our prayers.
When we serve others, our service actually becomes part of prayer—the answer to prayer. That is, when prayer is made for someone and we step out obediently to help them, we may become the answer to the prayer! Our obedient service to others definitely aids prayer. It keeps our prayers on the cutting edge of His kingdom work.