This morning I woke up early- for some unknown reason my body decided that I was done sleeping. I am in the middle of a few days where I have purposed to set aside some things in order to focus on prayer for our nation. (You can find out more about this national call to prayer and fasting by clicking over to TheCall.) So I said in my mind, "Ok God, if you want me to pray right now, I will pray." I proceeded to pray silently, inside my mind as I lay there in bed. (I was tired, remember...) It wasn't too long into my prayer time that I started to think about what I was doing- this silent praying. I thought about Jesus, and how he prayed. I know he prayed silently sometimes, but whenever he was confronting something, whether it be disease, demons, or death, he prayed out loud. Paul, Peter, the rest of the apostles? I can only think of examples where they prayed out loud. I then thought about confrontation. When we need to confront someone, how effective is it if we only confront them silently in our head? It's not. In order for effective confrontation to happen there has to be verbalization.
Much of our prayer life is spent in confrontation. We may be confronting lack, fear, stress, hopelessness, sickness, relationship issues, despair, etc. All of those requests on your prayer list, all of those things you are interceding for, it's confrontation. We are confronting the devil and his plans and declaring God's truth and God's kingdom over the situation. Yes, God hears your prayers when you pray silently, but its time for the devil to hear your prayers too! Beyond this though, there is supernatural power attached to our words.
God made mankind in his image, we are created in his likeness. When God speaks, the world is created. The spoken word has power. As his image bearers we too carry power in the words we speak. When Ezekiel was confronted with a valley of dry bones, this is what God said to him: