Jeremiah 33:3 – “Call to Me and I will answer you, and I will tell you great and mighty things, which you do not know.’” NASU
I would like to illustrate and identify some misconceptions regarding prayer in an effort to identify its power, purpose, and importance in the Christian’s arsenal of Spiritual Weapons.
IT IS OFTEN MORE OF A COMMODITY THAN AN ACTION.
What I mean by that is that in our generation it seems that prayer is viewed as something that can be manufactured, marketed, microwaved, and served as needed. I am all for virtually every effort to get people to pray but I am convinced that if people truly understand the dynamic of prayer and its power and purpose they will pray! Some people seem to feel that prayer is like an item on the shelf in a grocery store. We turn to prayer chains, calendars, days and nights, rotate praying, send money for others to pray for us, and even have dial-a-prayers. I am not suggesting that those are bad in and of themselves my question is “How much do we actually pray ourselves and for ourselves?” Too often people seem to specialize in a ‘word of prayer’ or ‘recite a canned prayer’ rather than actually engaging in the work of prayer!
It is apparent that most understand the need for prayer but do we understand the dynamics of prayer and pray? I heard an illustration years ago that illustrates what I’m saying:
“There was a wealthy widow on an Ocean Liner enroute from England to America. A severe storm developed and she used her influence to access the bridge where she demanded that the Captain do something. He responded, “Ma’am, everything that can be done has been done. We are now in the hands of God, we can ONLY pray.” Upon hearing that she gasped: “Captain, has it come to that!” Then she fainted in fear.
Prayer should never be a ‘last resort’ but the ‘initial reaction’ or ‘action’. Prayer is not an ‘appeal’ to Heaven’s Supreme Court it is a conversation with our LORD. It is communion with God not simply conforming to a Law. It is not getting ‘from’ God it is getting ‘to’ God. Our problem, too often, is that we are so involved in the natural world that we do not avail ourselves of the spiritual world. We are easily able to SEE the natural but are BLIND to the spiritual.
Some seem to believe that while prayer is somewhat profitable, they are not convinced of its power and vitality and therefore it occupies a relatively low position on their list of priorities. It is more of a ‘break the glass in case of emergency’ endeavor than one of daily and regular engagement.
We have more to say on this subject but will hold further thoughts until tomorrow. Until then may God bless you and be with you as you go through your day!