James 5:17 “…Elijah was as human as we are, and yet when he prayed earnestly…”
I know I’ve started this way before, but will you humor me again and play along? I want to play imagine. Imagine that when you – just you – when you pray for someone in faith, that God hears, that His angels are commissioned to respond, and that things in the realm of the unseen are changed. Imagine that just your prayers saved lives. Imagine that just your prayers resulted in a person, hundreds or even thousands of people being saved from Hell, and instead spending eternity with Jesus. Imagine just your prayers prevented a traffic accident death of a relative. Imagine just your prayers resulted in a doctor coming up with a medical treatment that helped bring healing to someone close you. Imagine that an entire neighborhood that was ravaged by evil people, gangs, drugs, etc., was transformed into a wonderful community to live in by just your prayers.
Would this be nothing more than a fantasy? Nothing more than a pipe dream? The answer is no! As a lover and believer of Jesus Christ you have been equipped with a power that is beyond your imagination. You think not? Let these verses speak loudly to you and if you are tempted to say – “oh yeah, but that was because it was him,” remember that this person was called ordinary like you and me.
James 5:16-18 “…The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and wonderful results. Elijah was as human as we are, and yet when he prayed earnestly that no rain would fall, none fell for the next three and a half years! Then he prayed for rain, and down it poured. The grass turned green, and the crops began to grow again.”
In these verses, they qualify Elijah as human like us – meaning that we could be used like him. That is the reason these verses were written to us – to open our eyes to and encourage us in the power of prayer.
Elijah wasn’t just playing around and praying for no rain for his own self interests – so that his picnics weren’t rained on. He was praying as he was directed by God’s Spirit and this was so that over those three years, it could come to a culmination of destroying the pagan climate and false prophets misleading the people, redirecting the hearts of God’s people back toward God. It wasn’t a quick thing or an overnight thing either. Elijah would be used in prayer over this important part of God’s will for over three years. We are only seeing one thing here but there were many things Elijah was praying for. You can imagine the havoc created by no rain for this long. Elijah had to pray himself and good people through this time. He had to remember that God was with him and leading him through it all. He had to pray earnest (faith-filled) prayers trusting God through every day when things looked bad.
You and I are called to pray. We are to pray about those things God brings to our heart. You’ll recognize them. They are impressions upon the heart when you let God know you are willing to pray. You are to pray the will of God. Don’t know what that is? The best way to find out is to read the gospels and see what Jesus did. Jesus said, “If you have seen me, you have seen the Father.” Pay attention to Jesus and you will see that all He did was good.
Acts 10:38 says, “And no doubt you know that God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power. Then Jesus went around doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the Devil, for God was with Him.” Pray that God leads you to pray for what you know Jesus would do for them and don’t budge!
1 John 3:8 say, “…the Devil, who has been sinning since the beginning. But the Son of God came to destroy these works of the Devil.” Pray, take authority over, and bind the devil from coming against what needs to be changed.
Is this a pipe dream? Is this a fantasy? Can you remember Elijah? “…Elijah was as human as we are, and yet when he prayed earnestly…”
Look around you. There is so much to pray about and like those needed in the harvest – too few to pray! Will you use what’s been given you?
In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2009 Tim Burt, All rights reserved.