Here is a short summary of the verses on prayer found in James 5:13-18
- Is anyone suffering? Pray.
- Is anyone sick? Call for the elders and let them pray over him.
- The prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up.
- Pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power.
- Elijah was a man and he prayed fervently that it might not rain, for three years and six months it didn’t rain. Then he prayed again, and heaven gave rain, and the earth bore its fruit.
I’ve been thinking a lot about spiritual disciplines lately – maybe it’s normal in the midst of a “spiritual lull” to be considering and re-evaluating the practices that draw us into the presence of God. There are a few disciplines I am faithful in, and there are several that I’m not good at – prayer is one of my weak points. Why? Because I am notoriously bad at doing things I don’t understand.
I’ve been thinking about what Jesus meant when He said “Follow Me.” Maybe he intends for us to watch His every move and learn to do likewise… whether we understand it or not. I know He spent an awful lot of time praying and I’m certain He needed it less than I do.
As I read the biographies of the heroes of the faith, men and women God used to do amazing things, I see a common thread. They all appear to have had amazing prayer lives. They did what Jesus modeled. Through faith and obedience in prayer, they tapped into the same Power that Jesus did.
In a sense I’m beginning to wave the white flag, surrendering pride and stubbornness to faith and obedience. Maybe I should pray not because I understand how it works, but because the Bible repeatedly instructs me to do so.
If prayer happens to be your strong suit, please pray for me that I would learn to be a man of prayer!