Pray On! :: by Holly Carnine Spate

PRAY. That one little word, when put into action, can create miracles and move mountains. It can shake things up, bring healing, restoration, and forgiveness. It can expose the darkness and shine the light. Prayer + God = endless possibilities.

James 5:16 expresses this incredible privilege given to all Christians: “The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.”

God’s Word calls prayer both powerful and effective…absorb that for a second! Could it be this is why Jesus himself spent so much time praying? Perhaps this is why God calls all of us who believe in Him to follow Jesus’ example and pray.

Mark 1:35 expresses Jesus’ commitment to prayer, “Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.”

Luke 5:16 conveys, “But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.”

Even on the cross our Savior prayed, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” (Luke 23:34)

Jesus knew that prayer brings one closer to God. It allows hearts to be open and receptive to hear His voice. Time spent in prayer can strengthen relationships, a person’s character, our very witness for the kingdom.

It is one of the strongest weapons against the enemy. It is what builds our faith and cripples our doubt. It’s what lifts us out of the pit and puts us on top of the mountain. It brings both strength and stability to one’s walk. It puts feet into action and enables each of us to unapologetically pick up our cross and follow our Savior wherever He leads.

Jesus even taught us how to pray. In Matthew 6:9-13 he said:

“This, then, is how you should pray: ‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.’”

We are always to pray for God’s will to be done ‘on earth as it is in heaven’. Prayer is only effective if our heart and outlook line up with God’s. We need to view our circumstances, our surroundings, and our world not by what we see, but by faith in Him and what He sees. And when we humbly answer the call and lift up our hearts to pray, our loving and amazing God promises our cries will be heard and He will come to our rescue.

Let these verses bring encouragement to every believer…

Isaiah 58:9 “Then you will call, and the Lord will answer; you will cry for help, and he will say: Here am I.”

Psalm 34:17 “ The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles.”

Romans 8:28 says, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”

Jeremiah 33:3 “Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.”

John 14:14 “You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.”

Matthew 17:20 “Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”

Friends, God never turns a deaf ear to those who are earnestly praying for His will to be done. He is always listening. He calls us to pray, and to this day, that command still stands. Praise God for the truth of His Word, for a Savior who set the example, and for the precious and powerful gift of prayer!

Let’s take this gift and make it an active part of our lives. Let’s individually and collectively humble ourselves and cry out to God who promises He not only loves us, but is forever listening.

Think how many mountains would move if Christians across the globe spent time daily in prayer. The possibilities are exciting and, with God, are endless! May this be our moment…our final wake up call to fall to our knees, wholeheartedly implement our Savior’s example, and carry out the command to pray on!