When we pray, we take the opportunity to talk to God. Through this, He can also speak to us more clearly, and we become better acquainted with Him and His will.
Our heavenly Father loves His children and can and wants to help them. But our prayers must be persistent, fervent, full of faith, and in accordance with God’s will. Yes, then we may also expect an answer.
When we read the Bible and look at great leaders, we find those who had communion with God in prayer. The secret of Abraham’s successful life was his prayer life with God. This man could pray. He could hear God speak, but he was also obedient to God.
Moses, the man of God, who walked with God, was able, with God’s assistance, to lead the people of Israel through a sea as through dry land. Through the prayer, faith, and obedience of Joshua, the walls of Jericho fell. Elijah prayed that it would not rain, and it did not rain for three years and six months. And then he prayed for rain and God gave it. In reference to this, the apostle James says, “Elijah was a man with a nature like ours” (James 5:17). By this, James means to say that all believers have the privilege of offering their petitions to God, for he emphasizes in verse 16: “The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.” Daniel was not touched by the lions in the lions’ den, for he was a man of prayer.
Jesus, even though He was the Son of God, took time for prayer. Sometimes He spent whole nights in prayer before His Father.
It is not only in the Bible that we find people who cultivated prayer. A servant of President Lincoln once looked through the keyhole to see what he was doing. She saw him on his knees in prayer. It is said of John Knox that when he prayed, all Scotland trembled. Livingstone was found on his knees when he died. Praying, he had passed from this time into eternity. Many other successful men and women were prayer warriors. – If such important people needed prayer, how much more we who have less rank and position?
It does not matter how great our needs are. God is able and willing to give us what we need. Matthew 19:26 says, “With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.”
Through the power of prayer, we can obtain forgiveness of our sins, a peace that is higher than all understanding, a strength that surpasses all human power, a faith for which many things are possible, a trust that will not fail us even if the world were to end, guidance according to God’s will, God’s presence, and healing of the body, if only we ask for it.
Through my own experience, I myself have received the testimony that there is great power in the prayer of faith. Miraculously, God healed me from a serious ailment. Yes, I can also sing with the poet:
What a friend we have in Jesus,
All my sins and griefs to bear!
What a privilege to carry
Everything to God in prayer!
A. E. Oelke