This is the first single and only original song from Canadian pop-R&B singer Justin Bieber's acoustic album, My Worlds Acoustic. The song finds Justin offering an inspirational outlook on the future. It is described by the press release as an "optimistic" and "uplifting" track that reflects the spirit of the album.
Unlike the other strictly acoustic tracks on the album, this song features a string section, synthesizers and congas. The percussion represents inspiration from Justin's worldly travels, including to Africa.
Justin started playing the acoustic guitar when he was a kid, and he went back to his original roots for My Worlds Acoustic, which mainly comprises unplugged versions of favorite songs of his fans. The arrangements reflect Justin's early days with merely an acoustic guitar or a lone piano and the Canadian singer plays guitar on the album alongside his musical director and fellow guitarist Dan Kanter.
Justin told Ryan Seacrest on his radio show on November 17, 2010: "It's a very uplifting song, very motivational. It definitely comes from the heart. It's very beautiful. I definitely thought of Michael [Jackson's] 'Man In The Mirror
,' when I was writing it."
Justin has made references to his Christian faith in several interviews so it is not surprising that one of this songs' lyrics, "I pray for the life not started," appears to be a veiled statement of pro-life beliefs.
Justin is donating part of the proceeds from My Worlds Acoustic to the Children's Miracle Network. "I am in the position to give back thanks to my fans and God," he said in a press release. "I wrote 'Pray' thinking I wanted to help others and I feel like I have a responsibility to do so. What is the point of doing all this if you can't make a difference in others' lives? This album is a gift to my fans and the money raised from it allows us all to help out."
The song's music video features mixes images of natural disasters and war with shots of Justin meeting with fans in the hospital and footage of him performing. The clip closes with a Mother Teresa quote: "God speaks in the silence of the heart. Listening is the beginning of prayer."
Albanian born Mother Teresa (1910-1997) was a Catholic nun who founded the Missionaries of Charity in Calcutta, India in 1950. Over the next decades her organization established schools and opened centers to treat the blind, aged, lepers, disabled and dying throughout the world. By the time of her death, missions of her order existed in more than 90 countries and had grown to include 40,000 nuns and many more lay workers and volunteers. Following her death she was beatified by Pope John Paul II and given the title Blessed Teresa of Calcutta.