James 5: 16-17; Luke 18:1
16 Confess your trespasses[a] to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.
The benefits of praying cannot be overemphasized. Prayer nourishes the soul, calms the heart, alleviates burdens, transforms the mind, empowers the body, fortifies the spirit, releases God’s power, activates angels, taps into God’s potentials, paralyses demons, frustrates Satan, defeats enemies, breaks fetters, silences evil, and makes impossibilities possible. But sadly, most times, we are not disciplined enough to take full advantage of the powers of prayer.
The Bible is full of men and women who demonstrated the power of prayer in different situations:
Elijah prayed on mount Carmel, and fire came down from the sky. As a result, the pagan worshipers accepted the Lordship of the true God.
Joshua prayed and the sun and moon stood still for a whole day; Israel completely defeated their enemies
Jabez prayed and reversed the evil destiny he inherited from birth; He lived an honorable life afterwards.
Hannah prayed, and defeated the plague of barrenness. Forth came one of the greatest prophets in Israel.
Daniel prayed, and God shut the mouth of the Lions. God’s kingdom was enthroned in Babylon.
Samson prayed, and received unusual strength which helped him defeat his enemies even at death.
Jacob wrestled with God until he received a blessing. His name was changed from Jacob (supplanter) to Israel (triumphant).
Peter and Paul prayed on different occasions, and the dead were brought back to life. As a result, many souls came to Christ.
These are all men of like passions – like feeling, like challenges; subject to the same trials and temptations common to men. Yet they changed the course of nature, challenged impossibilities, and moved the hand of God!
Where are the Elijahs of our day, who will perform ‘strange acts’ for God’s glory?
Where are the Daniels of our day, who will stand bold in the face of danger till everyone will know that Jesus is Lord?
Where are the Joshuas of our day, who will change the course of nature for the kingdom’s sake?
Where are the Moseses of our day, who will challenge limitations to prove God’s power?
Where are the Jacobs of our day, who will relentlessly wrestle until God’s blessings rest on generations yet unborn?
Oh God raise up men and women like the patriarchs of old, who will take over the baton, carry on the flame, and do great exploits for your name!
‘Groanings which cannot be uttered are often prayers which cannot be refused’. — Spurgeon
‘There are parts of our calling, works of the Holy Spirit, and defeats of the darkness that will come no other way than through furious, fervent, faith-filled, unceasing prayer.’ – Beth Moore
‘To get nations back on their feet, we must first get down on our knees.’ – Billy Graham