Volume: 908 May 22, 2023
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- Abraham’s servant prayed; Rebekah appeared.
- Moses cried to God; the sea divided.
- Moses prayed; Amalek was discomfited.
- Joshua prayed; Achan was discovered.
- Hannah prayed; Samuel was born.
- David prayed; Ahithophel hung himself.
- Asa prayed; a victory was gained.
- Jehoshaphat cried to God; God turned away his enemies.
- Isaiah and Hezekiah prayed; 185,000 Assyrians were dead within 12 hours.
- Daniel prayed; the meaning of a dream was revealed to him.
- Daniel prayed; the lions did not harm him.
- Ezra prayed; God answered (Ezra 8:21-23).
- Nehemiah darted a quick prayer; the king’s heart softened in a minute.
- Elijah prayed; rain descended.
- Elisha prayed; the Jordan River was divided.
- Elisha prayed; a child came back to life.
- The Apostles prayed; the Holy Ghost came down.
- A church prayed for Peter’s release from prison; Peter soon knocked at their door.
- You prayed and ____________________________.
“To the chief Musician upon Neginah, A Psalm of David. Hear my cry, O God; attend unto my prayer.” Psalm 61:1
David revealed an important ingredient that should be in more prayers — a cry. A “cry” is a desperate utterance, often accompanied by heartfelt tears.
Unfortunately, prayers are not the sincere pleas in times of distress they should be. For many, their prayers are more like a list a child hopes Santa Claus will fulfill. Their “prayer” usually goes something like: “Gimmee this and gimme that. Oh, yea. Bless Mommy, Daddy, Uncle Frank, and keep the bullies away. Oh Lord, could you give me an ‘A’ in Arithmetic.”
Sadly, “lists” are the most popular form of talking to God. Occasionally, one will open a prayer book and recite what someone else has written and labeled to be prayed in the situation one finds oneself.
Prayer to a Christian is communicating with a Holy God. He owes us nothing, but we are indebted to Him for everything. It is an honor and privilege that we are even permitted to speak to our Creator.
We should not dishonor him with empty, thoughtless, insincere pleas. Our conversation with God can be like we have with no other person. We can tell Him everything on our hearts.
We can tell the Lord things we would dare not tell others. He is our God, and He desires conversation with His people.
“But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking.” Mat. 6:7
The words are not as crucial as our sincerity. God is more interested in the condition of our hearts when we talk to Him. A sincere, real “cry” shows Him that we are in desperate need, and we realize He is the only solution to our situation. He sees our reliance and dependence on Him, which is what He desires.
Christian, have a real prayer time with God today! Talk to Him as if He is your best friend. He is!
“When thou prayest, rather let thy heart be without words than thy words without heart.” — Bunyan
The table was set, the food steaming hot, and the guests seated. It was time to eat, but first, the blessing. “Dear Lord, thank you for this food, for friends and family to share it with… Please bless it to our bodies and use us to serve you today. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”
How often have we heard the phrase used — “in Jesus’ name”? Have we ever given much thought as to what it means? It can be used in several ways.
When we pray, we come to the Father in Jesus’ name. Why is that necessary? As fallen, sinful people, we have no right to request anything of God Almighty. Were it not for Jesus, there would be no fellowship with God. Once we are born-again (John 3:3) and have accepted Jesus Christ as our personal Saviour, we also are accepted by God. He will honor our requests because of His love for Jesus and for all those who belong to Him. We ask all in Jesus’ name.
In Matthew 28:19-20, Jesus commanded his disciples to be witnesses in His name. He would soon return to Heaven (Acts 1:8) because His work on Earth was finished.
The awesome task of evangelizing the world was left to His church. They would go in the power of the Holy Spirit, but the name they proclaimed was that of Jesus Christ. To this very day, all successful witnessing and missionary work is done in the name of Jesus.
As a believer goes through his daily tasks, he acts as an ambassador for Jesus Christ. All that is done is done in the name of Jesus. Does the Christian have a good testimony in the community? The credit goes to Jesus. Does the believer have a reputation for not paying his debts? The blame goes to Jesus. Is he living a life that others would desire to have? If so, many will inquire about his Jesus. If not, he may turn people away from the kingdom of God.
The Bible says in Philippians 2:9-11, “Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” We must take seriously all we do in Jesus’ name to glorify our worthy God.
All the mighty works of God have been attended with great prayer, as well as with great faith. The Great American Revival (1850s to early 1900s) had such a beginning.
An unknown and obscure man was convicted about praying that God would bless his country. After praying, he made a soul-stirring inquiry, “Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?” A burden was soon put on his heart. He then got to work!
He rented a room and announced that there would be a prayer meeting there at such an hour of the day. At the appointed time not a single person was there. However, he began to pray and continued for half an hour alone. At the end of the half-hour, one joined him, and soon two more came in. I believe his prayer meeting closed with six concerned praying believers.
The following week came, and there were about fifty that attended. Soon the prayer meeting grew to a hundred. Others began to start other prayer meetings.
Soon there was scarcely a street in New York without a prayer meeting. Merchants found time to run in to pray. The meetings became daily ones. Some lasted for about an hour.
Petitions and requests were sent up. These were asked and offered before God, and the answers came. Many were the happy hearts that stood up and testified that the prayer offered last week had been fulfilled.
It was when all were earnest in prayer that the Spirit of God worked among the people. In a certain village, a preacher had been preaching, and hundreds were converted in a week. The matter spread throughout the Northern States. A quarter of a million people were believed to be converted in two or three months.
Oh, for earnest, sincere hearts to again change this nation through such prayer. God is able. He awaits our concern and dependence on Him. Will you faithfully pray for a revival in your country?
“When God starts changing things, He usually begins with changing us.”
- “My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O LORD; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee, and will look up.” Psalm 5:3
- “O LORD God of my salvation, I have cried day and night before thee:” Psalm 88:1
- “Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I pray, and cry aloud: and he shall hear my voice.” Palms 55:17
- “And it came to pass in those days, that he went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God.” Luke 6:12
- “Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer;” Romans 12:12
- “Pray without ceasing.” I Thessalonians 5:17