Let’s try to avoid all debates about whether or not there is a God, and assume for purposes of this question that there is. Now, what exactly is the point of prayer? What rational reason could anyone have for doing it?
To ask God for favors (cure my son’s disease, etc). But why? Surely God knows what’s best for you and your son better than you do. The Christian Bible is quite clear that God has a great plan for the world and everyone in it, he “knows even the number of hairs on your head”, etc; and he doesn’t need you to tell him what’s best for the world. And His judgement is a billion times better than yours anyway. So it’s ludicrous to think any mortal can cause God to alter His plan. To think otherwise is to imply God wasn’t doing what was best for the world already.
To ask God for guidance. But this is illogical, too. Either we have free will or we don’t. If we don’t, then God will make you do the right thing regardless of your prayer. And if we do have free will, then surely God telling you “go do XYZ” is breaking the rules. Anyway, very people believe God literally speaks to them; so it’s unclear how God can provide the requested guidance anyway.
To share your thoughts with God. But God is omnipotent, so he knows what you’re thinking already. Again, pointless to pray.
To show obedience or worship to God. Suprisingly, though, the Christian Bible really doesn’t emphazise praying as one of the things that’s important to God. For example, “pray” is not one of the 10 commandments. Jesus did say we should pray (“Our Father who art in Heaven, Hallowed be thy name, etc”), but it wasn’t emphasized nearly as much as his other points.
So I fail to see the logical reason for prayer. Yet I frequently see religious leaders pray, and Pat Robertson even famously prayed on national TV for Supreme Court Justices to die or retire. (!?!??!)
Even assuming one does believe in God, what exactly are such prayers supposed to accomplish?