Last night at the Hickman Mills church where I preach we focused on prayer for the entire service.
We sang about prayer. Sang prayer songs. Read scripture about prayer. Shared some thoughts about prayer. And, we prayed!
We prayed for the sick. Suffering. And hurting. We prayed for the lost. The weak among us. And the unfaithful who have left us. We prayed for our families. Husband. Wives. Mothers. Fathers. And children.
We gave thanks for our blessings. For our material prosperity. For our spiritual relationship. And for all good things we receive from God’s bountiful hand.
We praised God for his goodness. Greatness. And awesome majesty. Power. And glory.
It was a good evening. Indeed, it was a sweet hour of prayer.
However, prayer should not just be relegated to a worship service, or special prayer meeting, but should be a regular part of our devotional lives.
The Psalmist penned, “Evening and morning and at noon I will pray, and cry aloud, And He shall hear my voice” (Ps 55:17)
If God is your Father, He wants you to call home! On a regular basis. He wants to hear from you. He wants to know about your hurts. Your fears. The longings of your heart.
Peter exhorted, “Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you” (1 Pet 5:6-7).
In the next verse Peter pictures the Devil as a prowling “roaring lion.” And warns that he is seeking someone to devour. That’s a good reason to pray! Corre ten Boom once said, “The devil smiles when he make plans. He laughs when we get too busy. But he trembles when we pray.”
Call home and talk to God about your temptations, trials, and the devil’s enticements. He can help.
Paul admonished, “Don’t worry about anything, instead pray about everything. Tell God your needs and don’t forget to thank him for his answers. If you do this you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand” (Phil 4:6-7, TLB)
The famous writer “anonymous” said, “A day hemmed in prayer is less likely to unravel.” The old-time hymn says, “God is just a prayer away.” When worry attacks the serenity of your soul, and anxiety hovers over you like a dark cloud, call home! God’s peace can calm your troubled spirit.
Prayer draws us closer to the Father. Expresses our dependence upon Him. And speaks to our spirit of surrender to His will. The Psalmist prayed. “Show me your ways, O LORD, teach me your paths; guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.” (Ps 24:4-5).
The attitude that says to the Father, “show me,” “teach me” and “guide me” reflects our humility. Our need. Our surrender. It reminds me to call home!
“Prayer brings momentum,” wrote John Mason. “It lifts the heart above the challenges of life and gives it a view of God’s resources of victory and hope. Prayer provides power, poise, and peace for a person’s purpose, plans and pursuits. The most powerful energy anyone can generate is power energy.”
If your church-family is not engaged in a regular prayer meeting, I recommend it. The service will be inspiring. Edifying. And encouraging. It will draw you closer to God and to one another.
And if you are not engaged in regular, daily prayer, God has a request for you: Call home!
–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman