"When you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your
Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what
is done in secret, will reward you."
"The share of the man who stayed with the supplies is to be the same
as that of him who went down to battle. All will share alike."
1 Samuel 30:24
Excerpt from Why Revival Tarries
by Leonard Ravenhill
No man is greater than his prayer life. The pastor who is not praying is playing; the people who are not praying are straying. The pulpit can be a shopwindow to display one's talents; the prayer closet allows no showing off.
Poverty-stricken as the Church is today in many things, she is most stricken here, in the place of prayer. We have many organizers, but few agonizers; many players and payers, few pray-ers; many singers, few clingers; lots of pastors, few wrestlers; many fears, few tears; much fashion, little passion; many interferers, few intercessors; many writers, but few fighters. Failing here, we fail everywhere.
The two prerequisites to successful Christian living are vision and passion, both of which are born in and maintained by prayer. The ministry of preaching is open to few; the ministry of prayer-the highest ministry of all human offices-is open to all. Spiritual adolescents say, "I'll not go tonight, it's only the prayer meeting." It may be that Satan has little cause to fear most preaching. Yet past experiences sting him to rally all his infernal army to fight against God's people praying.... God is not prodigal with His power; but to be much for God, we must be much with God.
This world hits the trail for hell with a speed that makes our fastest plane look like a tortoise; yet alas, few of us can remember the last time we missed our bed for a night waiting upon God for a world-shaking revival. Our compassions are not moved. We mistake the scaffolding for the building. Present-day preaching, with its pale interpretation of divine truths, causes us to mistake action for unction, commotion for creation, and rattles for revivals.
The secret of praying is praying in secret. A sinning man will stop praying, and a praying man will stop sinning. We are beggared and bankrupt, but not broken, nor even bent.
Prayer is profoundly simple and simply profound. "Prayer is the simplest form of speech that infant lips can try," and yet so sublime that it outranges all speech and exhausts man's vocabulary. A Niagara of burning words does not mean that God is either impressed or moved. One of the most profound of Old Testament intercessors had no language- "Her lips moved, but her voice was not heard." No linguist here! There are "groanings which cannot be uttered."
Are we so substandard to New Testament Christianity that we know not the historical faith of our fathers (with its implications and operations), but only the hysterical faith of our fellows? Prayer is to the believer what capital is to the business man. Can any deny that in the modern church setup the main cause of anxiety is money? Yet that which tries the modern churches the most, troubled the New Testament Church the least. Our accent is on paying, theirs was on praying. When we have paid, the place is taken; when they had prayed, the place was shaken!
In the matter of New Testament, Spirit-inspired, hell-shaking, world-breaking prayer, never has so much been left by so many to so few. For this kind of prayer there is no substitute. We do it-or die!
Excerpt from Principles of Prayer
A Bible study compiled by Pastor Ronald Squibb
One hundred and ninety years ago a shoe repairman in England began to be concerned about the world's heathen peoples. As he would pound a way on his shoes, looking at a map he had placed above his work bench and on which he had written the few facts he could garner from Captain Cook's Travels and other books, he would pray for the salvation of people in distant lands.
William Carey - who described himself as a self-educated, ungifted plodder - went on to become the father of modern missions. Through his influence, Britain's first missionary society was formed - but only after Carey overcame great reluctance amoung his Baptist brethren. Soon afterward he went as a missionary himself to India - but only after being put off his British ship and having to take a Danish boat instead. His wife at first refused to go with him and refused to allow their children to go. She was persuaded differently only after Carey had already boarded ship.
Once in India, where he spent forty-two years, Carey and his co-workers translated the entire Bible into twenty-five Indian languages, and the New Testament or parts into 15 more.
Many books have been written about William Carey, but to my knowledge not one has been written about his little-known sister, a bedridden cripple. She and Carey were very close, and from India he wrote to her about all the details and problems of his work. Hour after hour, week after week, she would lift these concerns to the Lord in prayer. So I wonder: Who was responsible for the success of William Carey's ministry?
How does God apportion the credit? A good verse on this is 1 Samuel 30:24 - "The share of the man who stayed with the supplies is to be the same as that of him who went down to battle. All will share alike." I wonder if God isn't saying to us that we can have a worldwide impact without ever leaving our hometown or our home country.