by Pastor Tim Burt
Will you humor me? 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 alone have saved countless lives. Imagine that just your prayers resulted in a person, or hundreds, or even thousands of people being saved from Hell—instead spending eternity with Jesus. Imagine that just your prayers prevented a death of a relative from a traffic accident. Imagine just your prayers resulted in a doctor coming up with a medical treatment that helped bring healing to someone close to 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.
Does this sound like fantasy to you? Is this nothing more than a pipe dream? It shouldn’t be! 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 speaking of Elijah speak loudly to you and if you are tempted to say—oh yeah, but that was because it was Elijah, remember that this person was called ordinary like you and me.
James 5:16-18 NLT “…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 just 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 trying to be a superhero with superpowers. He hadn’t prayed 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 would result in the destruction of the pagan climate and false prophets misleading God’s people. It would result in redirecting their hearts back toward God. It wasn’t a quick thing or an overnight thing either. Elijah would be used in praying out this important part of God’s will for over three years. Only part of picture is painted for us but there were several things Elijah was praying for. You can imagine the havoc created by no rain for a three year period. That became a time period of great hardship that affected good people. Elijah had to pray himself and good people through this time. He had to remember that God was leading him and was with him through it all. He had to pray earnest (faith-filled) prayers trusting God each and every day. This drought created horrible conditions and you know that it had to test his faith.
You and I are called to pray. We are to pray about those things God places upon our heart. You’ll recognize them. They are impressions upon the heart that come to those who are willing to be led by God and obedient 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 TLB 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. Lean on Him and do good in however He leads you. No matter how great or small it might seem, it’s about being led and obeying your heart. Pray and do as you are led. When you do, you will have an influence in God’s behalf. Nothing is insignificant if it’s done in behalf of the Lord.
1 John 3:8 NLT says, “… the Son of God came to destroy these works of the Devil.” You do the same in Jesus name. Pray with authority and confidence and then trust God is working. Don’t measure the results of your prayers by the circumstances around you. That is too myopic. Pray and trust God in the rest! Your prayers avail much!
Is this a pipe dream? Is this a fantasy? Can you remember Elijah? Look around you. There is so much to pray about and too few who will turn off their distractions and pray! Will you?
James 5:17 “…Elijah was as human as we are, and yet when he prayed earnestly…”
In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
Published by Pastor Tim Burt
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