The great people of the earth today are the people who pray. I do not mean those who talk about prayer: nor those who can explain prayer: but I mean those people who take time and pray. They have not time. It must be taken from something else. This something else is very important--very important and pressing, but still less important and less pressing than prayer.                       S. D. Gordon

I would like to share with you some thoughts taken from a prayer journal I received, published by World Wide Publications.

Prayer is our most important work as Christians. It is a journey filled with the satisfaction of helping the helpless, and of seeing the purposes of God fulfilled and the strategies of Satan thwarted. In the unseen arena of prayer the real work of God is forged. We often see the results in the visible world, but God is moving behind the scenes, acting in response to those who labor daily in prayer.

Exodus 17 illustrates this principle vividly. As the Israelite army fought the Amalekites on the plain of Rephidim, Moses stood on a hill overlooking the battle. Whenever he held up the staff of God, Israel prevailed. But when he lowered the staff, the Amalekites gained the advantage. A clear principle of prayer emerges from this account: God acts in response to the prayers of his intercessors, supernaturally enabling those he has called to accomplish the assigned task. Moses part in the victory, though probably unseen and unnoticed by those in the fight, was vital.

Our role in the work of God throughout the world may be unnoticed, unseen, unappreciated. But, like Moses, God calls us to "hold up the staff of God"--to pray. In fact, God is looking "for a man among them who would build up the wall and stand before me in the gap on behalf of the land so I would not have to destroy it, but I found none" (Ezek. 22:30). We need to take our part in the plan and program of God seriously, developing the attitude that Samuel had toward Israel when he said, "As for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord by failing to pray for you" (1 Sam. 12:23).

Prayer is work. Prayer is hard work. But prayer is a holy work as well---vital and indispensable. God has a more difficult time finding people for prayer than he does for any other assignment.

The Lord must be pleased as He sees each of you labor for Him in Prayer.

Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself and God our Father, who has loved us and given us eternal comfort and good hope by grace, comfort and strengthen your hearts in every good work and word. 2 Thessalonians 2:16,17

1998

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