C.R. Nichol and R.L Whiteside, in their Sound Doctrine workbooks, said of prayer, Perhaps no one can be entirely free from his environments; but to keep this prayerless spirit of the present age from overwhelming us, let us diligently read the Bible, and thus associate with God and Christ and the praying men of God and pray. Prayer is the very breath of the Christian (Vol. 2, pg. 68).
Prayer is the very breath of the Christian. This is a sentiment, which if embraced by Christians, will lead to the type of spiritual maturity and mindset needed to combat the evil of our day.
Though prayer can be an intensely private experience, it is right and proper for Christians to pray in the public assembly as well. In such circumstances, one is called upon to lead in prayer, and has the responsibility to do so in an edifying manner. Paul instructed the saints in Corinth, in 1 Corinthians 14, to pray in worship with spirit and understanding (vs. 15). Though the immediate context has reference to the confusion which would be present if a prayer was offered in an unknown tongue without benefit of interpretation (vs. 14), nevertheless the principle remains relevant to this day. Paul wrote, Otherwise, if you bless with the spirit, how will he who occupies the place of the uninformed say Amen at your giving of thanks, since he does not understand what you say? (vs. 16).
When offering up prayer to God in worship, the leader should be careful to use language that all can understand, and to speak loud enough for the entire church to hear him. If a man is unwilling or incapable of this, he should not be put into this position of leadership in public worship. Remember, the purpose of public prayer is twofold. First, to make known to God the sentiments, needs and requests of those gathered; and second, to edify fellow worshippers.
Concerning public prayer:
These few examples show that prayer was a central part of the first century Christians worship to God, and show us that it should be integral to our worship as well.
Prayer is our means of communicating to God our praise, needs, penitence, and supplications on our own behalf and on behalf of others. Our Lord taught in parable, that men ought always to pray, and not lose heart (Luke 18:1).
Prayer, offered confidently by a saint, can accomplish wonders. Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much (James 5:16). As we engage in worship to the Almighty God in heaven, may we all pray without ceasing (1 Thessalonians 5:16), petitioning God in faith.