Preachers Must Pray And Be Prayed For
By Lois J. Stucky
The prayer giant, E. M. Bounds, writing about one hundred years ago, expressed a dire need of his day that is every bit as serious a need in our day, when he wrote: "Never has there been a greater need for saintly men and women. More imperative still is the call for saintly, God-devoted preachers."
In his book, Preacher And Prayer, Bounds writes: "Satan has his hold and rule on the world, and labors to make all its movements serve his ends. Christianity must do its best work, present its most attractive and perfect models. By every means, modern sainthood must be inspired by the loftiest ideals and by the largest possibilities through the Spirit. Paul lived on his knees, that the Ephesian Church might measure the heights, breadths, and depths of an immeasurable saintliness, and ‘be filled with all the fullness of God’ (Eph. 3:19).
"Epaphras laid himself out with the exhaustive toil and strenuous conflict of fervent prayer, that the Colossian Church might ‘stand perfect and complete in all the will of God’ (Col. 4:12). Everywhere, everything in apostolic times was on the stretch that the people of God might each and all ‘come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ’" (Eph. 4:13).
Early Church preachers like Paul and Epaphras set a great example, laboring fervently in prayer and preaching for God’s highest spiritual benefits and for greatest spiritual development for those under their care. How earnestly Henry Blackaby in his article in this issue exhorts today’s preachers likewise to zeal and carefulness and solemn purpose, to preach and teach to develop mature, knowledgeable Christians worthy of their calling as saints. This is the way for the Church to glorify God more and to be better prepared for the revival so urgently needed to bring in a harvest of unsaved souls.
Do You Pray for Your Preacher?
Preachers must not only pray for congregations, but congregations must pray for the preacher. Bounds further writes:
"Somehow the practice of praying in particular for the preacher has fallen into disuse or become discounted….Prayer, to the preacher, is not simply the duty of his profession, a privilege, but it is a necessity. Air is not more necessary to the lungs than prayer is to the preacher. It is absolutely necessary for the preacher to pray. And it is an absolute necessity that the preacher be prayed for. These two propositions are wedded into a union which ought never to know any divorce: the preacher must pray; the preacher must be prayed for.
"It will take all the praying he can do, and all the praying he can get done, to meet the fearful responsibilities and gain the largest, truest success in his great work. The true preacher, next to the cultivation of the spirit and fact of prayer in himself, in their most intense form, covets with a great covetousness the prayers of God’s people." E. M. Bounds was not only a praying saint, but he had also served as a pastor, and he knew whereof he spoke.
The Apostle Paul did not hesitate to ask for prayer, Bounds points out. Many of his epistles requested the prayers of the readers. What could be a more earnest plea than we read in Romans 15:30: "I beseech you, brethren, for the Lord Jesus Christ’s sake, and for the love of the Spirit, that ye strive together with me in your prayers to God for me"? Doubtlessly much of Paul’s success as an apostle was due to the volume of prayer he solicited from the various churches.
It will please God if we pray for our preachers. They are ones chosen and gifted of Him as leaders of His Church. They are ministers of His Word. Prayer helps them to teach and preach the truth accurately and effectively, which is essential for the edification and reviving of the saints. God asks us to honor and respect and love them as His chosen servants. When tempted to criticize or judge, pray instead!
Please do not miss the article on page six taken from another of E. M. Bounds’ books. This seasoned prayer warrior’s helps in overcoming Satan’s wiles through the Word of God and the Blood of Jesus are invaluable.
John A. MacMillan’s article beginning on page five will refresh to your mind important truths that can easily slip into disuse as Satan is always striving to cloud over that which is effective in defeating his tactics. Might we, God’s praying people, rise to our calling to be God’s holy instruments, through Spirit-directed praying, to accomplish His purpose in this very significant hour on the brink of Christ’s coming again!
Please Pray for the Ministry of the Printed Gospel
The Herald of His Coming mailroom has been a beehive of activity this past week. On Monday, a brother came with his covered trailer, and some of the Herald staff loaded onto it trays containing about 18,000 August Herald papers, which volunteers had slipped one by one into envelopes the previous week. This load was taken to the mailing company which addresses and mails these single copies going to readers in USA. Meanwhile, Christine Ludlow had taken time from other office work to apply address labels onto envelopes used to mail multiple copies of Herald of His Coming to distributors in many countries of the world.
Sara Bailey, another Herald office worker, left other important responsibilities to run the labeling machine to affix addresses to small envelopes for single copies to be sent to readers outside USA. Then she teamed up with Gayla Royer, who had left her strategic desk, and Jalie Herman, to put thousands of Herald papers through the two folding machines, making the quarter fold. These processes needed to be repeated several times during the week. Rich Carmicheal was on call to supervise and to give help if trouble was encountered with one of the machines.
On Tuesday morning, the volunteers arrived about thirty strong and enjoyed "close" fellowship with one another, utilizing almost all the tables and chairs and space the mailroom possesses. Most worked at filling envelopes with from two to fifty copies of the August Herald to go to the zealous friends who distribute in their locality in numerous nations.
A team of four or five of the men volunteers put larger quantities, from fifty copies to two hundred copies, in boxes. Several of the men loaded the pickup truck which one kindly loans, and took about 475 packages and boxes to the post office. Included was a shipment of 18 boxes of the Spanish Herald to the prison ministry in Colombia. An additional 1,860 packages loaded into mailbags destined for outside USA were picked up later in the week by the DHL mailing company.
Yet remaining were about 21,000 copies to be sent individually to readers outside USA. On Thursday morning a group of eight or ten volunteers returned to slip these single copies of the Herald into envelopes. Staff workers counted, tied in bundles, and put in mailbags these envelopes for shipment by DHL. Other groups of volunteers came later to finish the mailing of the August Herald. Please join us in thanking God for the faithful volunteers who help so gallantly to spread the Gospel!
Only the Herald staff workers know all the other jobs big and small not covered above that also go into a busy mailing time. The mailroom will be quieter this week while the September Herald is finalized and sent to the printer. Then again the mailroom will bustle with activity. Month after month this routine is repeated, as Herald workers and volunteers unite in the glorious task of helping to go into all the world with the Gospel. Surely the Lord of the Harvest is pleased as He looks upon willing workers serving together toward the fulfilling of the passion of His heart that the news of His atoning death, His resurrection, and His coming again be spread even to "every creature" (Mark 16:15).
Very essential to maintaining this outflow of the printed Gospel is the help of you friends whose gifts pay the printing and postage bills, as well as purchase envelopes and other supplies. Less than a month ago there were many bags of mail awaiting postage money, but now they are all en route to readers. Praise the Lord! God reward each of you who made special effort to help this summer. God loves the cheerful giver and the sacrifices made in devotion to Him and His work.
And saturating every part of the ministry must be prayer! We thank each one who bears Herald of His Coming up before the Lord, for supply of needs and for His powerful blessing on the messages. Are not we – into whose hearts the glorious Gospel has shined and who have received forgiveness of sins and eternal life – eager to show our gratitude to our dear Savior by taking a part in sharing the wondrous story as He has told us to?
We welcome all Herald readers to share in this ministry of His through financial help and prayers, as the Lord puts it on your hearts. We will be grateful to have you remember with us the requests we list below at this time. Thank you!
* That He graciously hears prayers offered up around the world for Herald of His Coming ministry, and sustains it day by day! Thank God for the individual saints as well as for prayer groups and church congregations who take time to intercede for the ministry. Your help is vital! Thank you!
* That God will use the messages of this issue of Herald of His Coming to help the Church prepare for the revival so greatly needed. Ask God to help us, His saints, to devote ourselves more diligently to fervent, effectual prayer for revival. Especially remember God’s chosen servants called to pastor and evangelize, that prayer will not be crowded out of their busy schedules.
* For a fresh anointing on RIGHT CHOICE Salvation herald, and that many more readers will repent and put their faith in Christ.
* For protection under the Blood of Jesus of all the Herald property, work and workers. The enemy Satan is very active, particularly when we print articles to reveal his works and the way to victory over them.