Does prayer really work? This might be a question that you have asked yourself before, and maybe you doubt that prayer is all that effective. Have you ever found yourself saying in frustration, “I guess all I can do is pray”?
Let me speak from first-hand experience and suggest that prayer can make all the difference. It isn’t something we resolve ourselves to when it seems like everything else is beyond our control. It should be our first line of offense and defense in our spiritual life. It should be our default setting, our go-to thing right from the beginning. It’s also something I believe the Holy Spirit can lay on our hearts if we take the time in our day to listen.
Not just for ourselves
But also for the sake of others
On Monday my wife and I were in a pretty significant accident in a pickup truck. After driving for 45 minutes on slightly wet roads, we suddenly hit a thin layer of ice at 60 mph. There wasn’t much I could do at that point, there was no controlling truck, we slid sideways, hit the ditch and did a complete roll landing on the wheels.
A shattered windshield that miraculously still held together, a crunched in roof all with no serious injuries. Just bruises, a couple of goose eggs and a concussion. At some point just after, maybe on the way to the hospital, I began texting some close friends and received the following message. “Oh my word!!!! You guys were so heavy on my mind this morning too! God was covering you guys.”
Last week, after returning home from a convicting all staff conference, we felt the need to establish a dedicated prayer group with the members committed to pray on a specific day each week for us and our campus ministry. This accident occurred exactly one week after establishing this prayer group.
I 100% believe we were supposed to be prayed for on Monday morning to such an extent that despite my side of the truck hitting first as it rolled over (we were still traveling between 50-60 mph), the driver side window did not even have a crack in it…
We were protected
Acts 4:23-31 23 On their release, Peter and John went back to their own people and reported all that the chief priests and the elders had said to them. 24 When they heard this, they raised their voices together in prayer to God. “Sovereign Lord,” they said, “you made the heavens and the earth and the sea, and everything in them. 25 You spoke by the Holy Spirit through the mouth of your servant, our father David:
“‘Why do the nations rage and the peoples plot in vain? 26 The kings of the earth rise up and the rulers band together against the Lord and against his anointed one.
27 Indeed Herod and Pontius Pilate met together with the Gentiles and the people of Israel in this city to conspire against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed. 28 They did what your power and will had decided beforehand should happen. 29 Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. 30 Stretch out your hand to heal and perform signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus.” 31 After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.
There is great power in prayer, the believers in Acts believed it and not as an afterthought or a last resort. They knew times would get more difficult so they prayed for boldness.
Be bold enough to pray
God may bring someone’s name to mind in your prayers, quiet time, bible study, he might even wake you up in the middle of the night thinking about someone. It may be in those times that we need to pray for them.
I don’t believe it a coincidence that we were heavy on a friends heart the same morning we were in an accident. And I don’t think it a coincidence last week we asked a certain group of people to pray for us on specific days of the week with a commitment through all of 2018. Pray for others and allow them to pray for you.
Don’t be under prayed for!