Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. Elijah was a human being, even as we are. He prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the land for three and a half years. Again he prayed, and the heavens gave rain, and the earth produced its crops. (James 5:16-18)
When we do not pray, we become faint-hearted, discouraged and will ultimately quit. Confess your sins to each other, for, as James wrote, the prayer of the righteous is powerful and effective.
- Grace releases divine, persistent stamina for prayer.
Effective means with energy. Energy implies action with efficiency. Energy beyond yourself comes from the grace of God.
In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. (Romans 8:26)
- Move from successful to significant; leave a legacy.
During the days of Jesus’ life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with fervent cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission. (Hebrews 5:7)
Jesus prayed a prayer of submission because of the supernatural grace given to Him. Grace gives us patience to endure trials. Do not be intimidated as Elijah was intimidated by Jezebel even though he walked in the grace of God. Never doubt God. In worship, we are to give due recognition to our God. Pray with renewed persistence, pray beyond your faults and failures, and pray continuously.
Jesus prayed three times for the cup to pass. Daniel prayed for 21 days. Paul prayed three times for his healing. And Elijah prayed seven times for the rain to come.
- All things come by grace. Grace is enough.
So Ahab went off to eat and drink, but Elijah climbed to the top of Carmel, bent down to the ground and put his face between his knees. (1 Kings 18:42)
Elijah’s posture in prayer depicts his attitude of submission. God’s intervention is dependent on our faith in and submission to Him.
This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him. (1 John 5:14-15)
- How can we pray in the will of God?
Pray in the Spirit.
I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever! Amen. (Ephesians 3:16-21)
Pray like Paul, giving thanks in all circumstances.
It is God’s will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; that each of you should learn to control your own body in a way that is holy and honourable… (1 Thessalonians 4:3-4)
… give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
(1 Thessalonians 5:18)
For it is God’s will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish people. (1 Peter 2:15)
Our God always keeps His promises.
The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead, he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. (2 Peter 3:9)
Learn to pray in the will of God.
Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field. (Matthew 9:38)
God will send His angels to fight for you.
So he said, “Do you know why I have come to you? Soon I will return to fight against the prince of Persia, and when I go, the prince of Greece will come; but first I will tell you what is written in the Book of Truth. (No one supports me against them except Michael, your prince.) (Daniel 10:20-21)
God gives us assurance in times of trial.
But now I urge you to keep up your courage, because not one of you will be lost; only the ship will be destroyed. (Acts 27:22)
Prayer empowered by divine grace brings divine intervention.