It must rate as one of the greatest wonders in the universe that we who are “but dust and ashes” are not only permitted, but encouraged and invited, to speak to God; that words spoken on earth are heard instantaneously in heaven and that our Father is willing to answer those prayers. Can it be that our feeble groanings can move the omnipotent arm of the Almighty? Only eternity will reveal how much was accomplished by the faithful, frequent and fervent prayers of God’s people in every generation: “The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much” Jms.5.16.
Prayer engages the Almighty and harnesses the power of the Omnipotent and many a time we ask how we would ever manage “had suffering saints no mercy seat?” George Müller, who proved God’s unfailing faithfulness, said regarding prayer, “I went to my God and prayed diligently and I received what I needed.” Prayer has been the common characteristic of all who have wrought exploits through the mighty power of God.
In the present volume, quite rightly, emphasis will be placed on the prayer life of the Lord Jesus for He was the perfect Exemplar of prayer. It was an integral part of His life, a prominent feature of His unbroken communion with His Father; John chapter 17 comes to mind as a prime example of what featured daily in His experience here. Not only do we remember Him Who “in the days of His flesh … offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears” Heb.5.7, but how reliant we are upon His unceasing intercession for us at the Father’s right hand.
Again we feel indebted to all the authors who, at great personal cost, have laboured to bring us their profitable and valued exercise, reflecting hours of disciplined study and commitment. No one claims this to be an exhaustive treatise on the important subject of prayer but we send forth this volume with the earnest desire that we will all increasingly become men and women of prayer. May we come to understand with fresh enlightenment that God does hear prayer, Ps.65.2 and He is willing to answer; “… He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him” Heb.11.6
- But there’s a power which faith can wield,
- When mortal aid is vain,
- That eye, that arm, that love to reach,
- That listening ear to gain.
- That power is prayer, which soars on high,
- Through Jesus to the throne,
- And moves the hand which moves the world,
- To bring deliverance down.
- (James C. Wallace)
Roy Reynolds, N. Ireland, September 2011