I have recently been reviewing a couple of our Bible studies in the Christian Worker Bible Study Series titled Biblical Prayers. This review coincided with some recent challenges in the ministry of Global Youth Evangelism. We have always believed in the value of Spirit-led prayer and have practiced it through various decades, although admittedly in varying degrees. Yesterday, in a meeting with a dozen or so pastors and ministry leaders, I heard these words in a prayer: "Let us pray with the words from Your mouth". We sensed that this was a confirmation that we should refocus our attention on the patterns and the examples of the many effective prayers found in the Bible.
The following are some excerpts from the above-mentioned Bible studies:
"Through the centuries, powerful men and women of God have spoken and written about many outstanding concepts of prayer. Someone has said that “prayer is the subject most written and talked about in the Church but the least practiced.” Our doctrine says it is important to pray; however, while we are praying, it is often a temptation to think we aren’t doing anything for the kingdom of God. The truth is we are most effective as followers of Christ when we know how to pray effectively. The Lord changes hearts and lives and families; towns and cities are transformed; nations are shaken; all this is in the realm of possibility when God’s people begin to pray effectively!"
"It is not that we don’t believe in prayer. Most simply don’t do it, or at least not in a way that is effective. One of the purposes of this study is to examine the prayers of God’s people mentioned in the Bible, and hopefully, we as the Church of Jesus Christ, will receive a new or renewed vision to pray - until we as individuals are changed, until the Church is revived, until nations are shaken to the point of repentance and the powers of darkness are abated - so that the glory of the Lord will fill all the earth as the waters cover the sea. (Hab. 3:3)"
"Praying biblical prayers (or praying after the same pattern and using the same spiritual principles found in the Bible) gives us the assurance that we are praying in agreement with the word of God. We can be confident that God will always hear us and answer us. (John 11:41,42)"
"One of the surest ways to know that we are praying correctly is to pray in agreement with what God has already promised. Also, we can become an active part in the establishment of God’s will on earth when we pray in agreement with something that has already been prophesied in the Word of God."
"Thus, the question is not does one believe in prayer, not even do we pray from time to time, but are we effective in our praying. The greatest successes in the kingdom of God here on earth are the results of effective praying. Someone has said, 'When the house of God on the earth is a house of prayer, then heaven is most active.'"