Too often our petitions fit the description of prayer given by Thomas Brooks, who said, “Cold prayers are as arrows without heads, as swords without edges, as birds without wings; they pierce not, they cut not, they fly not up to heaven. Cold prayers always freeze before they reach heaven.” To become more effective in our praying, we should heed these words of Bishop Hall: “It is not the arithmetic of our prayers, how many they are; nor the rhetoric of our prayers, how eloquent they be; nor the geometry of our prayers, how long they be; nor themusic of our prayers, how sweet our voice may be; nor the method of our prayers, how orderly they may be; nor even the theology of our prayers, how good the doctrine may be—which God cares for. Fervency of spirit is that which availeth much.”
James reminds us that Elijah “prayed earnestly.” And what answers he received—the very forces of nature were changed! By contrast, indefinite praying by indifferent people brings little results. Fervent prayer, if it be for God’s glory and presented in the name of His Son, will accomplish great things for time and eternity. – PR.V.
Our Daily Bread, September 14
- “Evangelical Preaching,” Charles Simeon, p. 185