The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…
"A Calling, a Privilege, a Responsibility"
Our spiritual enemies likely know better than do we ourselves the magnitude of the gift that prayer is our hearts and lives, and to the hearts and lives of those for whom we pray.
"He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him" (Psalm 91:15).
In truth, prayer itself is not the gift. The gift rather involves God's working through our requests and intercessions. Indeed, we often talk about "the power of prayer" in Christian circles. In literal terms, this constitutes a misnomer. No inherent power exists in prayer itself. Many people pray who do not know the Lord Jesus Christ, and thus have no access to God (Romans 5:2). Those who do love and trust the Savior sometimes "ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts" (James 4:3). Thus, when considering the power of prayer, what we actually mean is that God grants us opportunity to avail ourselves of His mighty power. We approach the throne of grace with requests for the direct working of His heart and hand. As mentioned yesterday in Part 1, we serve as spiritual conduits when we pray. The Holy Spirit works within and through us to avail ourselves of God's promise to answer when we call. "I know that this shall turn to my salvation through your prayer, and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ" (Philippians 1:19).
Battered and bludgeoned Satan and his demonic minions have long been victimized by God's working through the prayers of His people. Thus, they seek to discourage our approach to our Heavenly Father in countless ways. Discouragement, distraction, and deception regarding prayer must therefore be viewed not merely in human terms. No, victims of God's working through the prayers of His people - the devil and demonic influences - must be acknowledged as the primary culprits seeking to hamper our walk with the Lord in the blessed wonder of prayerful fellowship and the undertaking to serve as the circuit through which His power flows. "Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, unto Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end, Amen" (Ephesians 3:20-21).
Regarding prayer and God's working through our requests and intercessions, we do well to get our dander up. Our spiritual enemies seek to discourage our approach to the throne of grace. They know all too well what will happen when we get there, or rather, what will happen when God subsequently works to answer our prayers. We are conduits through which the risen life of our conquering King flows, all through the sublime simplicity of a calling, a privilege, a responsibility. Let us indeed get our spiritual dander up! Wounded and bleeding foes seek to hinder our prayers! Let us not allow them to succeed! This we do by prayer itself, that is, by asking our Lord to administer His power to motivate, guide, and enable our praying. Long ago, the disciples of the Lord Jesus offered perhaps the wisest prayer ever offered. Let us join them in this moment, and in many to come…
"Lord, teach us to pray."
Weekly Memory Verse
Pray without ceasing.
(I Thessalonians 5:17)