TODAY’S POEM: “A Prayer in Times of Trouble” by Belinda van Rensburg.
Our prayer motivator passage from the Word of God today is Psalm 65:2 which reads: “O thou that hearest prayer, unto thee shall all flesh come.”
Our featured prayer motivator quote is from J.C. Ryle. He said: “Personal working for souls is good. Giving money is good. But praying is best of all. By prayer we reach Him without whom work and money are alike in vain. We obtain the aid of the Holy Spirit. Money can hire workers. Universities can give learning. Congregations may elect. Bishops may ordain. But the Holy Spirit alone can make ministers of the Gospel, and raise up lay workmen in the spiritual harvest, who need not be ashamed. Never, never may we forget that if we would do good to the world, our first duty is to pray!”
My personal encouragement for you today is this: Prayer is like any other important discipline in the Christian life. If you don’t do it, you won’t reap the benefits and blessings that God wants you to have. If you want to reap the benefits and blessings of prayer, then you need to Just Pray!
Our prayer motivator devotional today is titled “PRAYER AND FAITH” part 3 from the book, “Necessity of Prayer” by E.M. Bounds.
Moreover: such faith acts. Like the man who was born blind, it goes to wash in the pool of Siloam when told to wash. Like Peter on Gennesaret it casts the net where Jesus commands, instantly, without question or doubt. Such faith takes away the stone from the grave of Lazarus promptly. A praying faith keeps the commandments of God and does those things which are well pleasing in His sight. It asks, “Lord, what wilt Thou have me to do?” and answers quickly, “Speak, Lord, Thy servant heareth.” Obedience helps faith, and faith, in turn, helps obedience. To do God’s will is essential to true faith, and faith is necessary to implicit obedience.
Yet faith is called upon, and that right often to wait in patience before God, and is prepared for God’s seeming delays in answering prayer. Faith does not grow disheartened because prayer is not immediately honoured; it takes God at His Word, and lets Him take what time He chooses in fulfilling His purposes, and in carrying on His work. There is bound to be much delay and long days of waiting for true faith, but faith accepts the conditions — knows there will be delays in answering prayer, and regards such delays as times of testing, in the which, it is privileged to show its mettle, and the stern stuff of which it is made.
The case of Lazarus was an instance of where there was delay, where the faith of two good women was sorely tried: Lazarus was critically ill, and his sisters sent for Jesus. But, without any known reason, our Lord delayed His going to the relief of His sick friend. The plea was urgent and touching — “Lord, behold, he whom Thou lovest is sick,” — but the Master is not moved by it, and the women’s earnest request seemed to fall on deaf ears. What a trial to faith! Furthermore: our Lord’s tardiness appeared to bring about hopeless disaster. While Jesus tarried, Lazarus died.
But the delay of Jesus was exercised in the interests of a greater good. Finally, He makes His way to the home in Bethany.
“Then said Jesus unto them plainly, Lazarus is dead. And I am glad for your sakes, that I was not there, to the intent ye may believe; nevertheless let us go unto him.”
Fear not, O tempted and tried believer, Jesus will come, if patience be exercised, and faith hold fast. His delay will serve to make His coming the more richly blessed. Pray on. Wait on. Thou canst not fail. If Christ delay, wait for Him. In His own good time, He will come, and will not tarry.
Delay is often the test and the strength of faith. How much patience is required when these times of testing come! Yet faith gathers strength by waiting and praying. Patience has its perfect work in the school of delay. In some instances, delay is of the very essence of the prayer. God has to do many things, antecedent to giving the final answer — things which are essential to the lasting good of him who is requesting favour at His hands.