You Helping By Prayer
By Lois J. Stucky
Herald Prayer Force
Since its founding in 1941, Herald of His Coming has placed great reliance upon prayer. Prayer might be compared to a lifeline. The God who brought Herald of His Coming into existence has told us through His Son: "Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: for every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened" (Matt. 7:7-8). Asking, seeking, knocking – in other words, prayer – is God’s appointed way of supplying and sustaining His work on earth. Prayer honors our loving, gracious God, giver of all good things. Prayer brings the trusting child to Him in a fellowship which He desires and which His children urgently need. Prayer is a channel through which His blessings flow to them. Sweet, blessed hour of prayer!
Although prayer has always had great prominence at Herald of His Coming, in 1997 we felt led to strengthen prayer support from Herald readers by forming the Herald Prayer Force. This came about when Dr. Wesley L. Duewel visited us one day and during our time together, shared his inspiring account of the value of increasing prayer support. I would like to repeat the account as we wrote about it in 1997:
As a young man, not long after finishing schooling, Brother Duewel and his young wife traveled to India as missionaries. They were the first missionaries from their mission (OMS) to the northern state of Uttar Pradesh. Operation World tells us that this state is "the home of Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism." It was a spiritually dark and needy place.
Twenty-five years of earnest, devoted missionary service brought slow advance, with an average of one church planted per year. At the end of the twenty-five years, as he traveled on a periodic visit to America, Brother Duewel was in continuous prayer. His heart was crying out to God for the strategy that would bring greater fruitfulness to the work of God in India. At last he felt led of the Lord to ask for 1,000 praying friends who would commit to pray 15 minutes per day for the work in India for one year. About 1,500 persons committed to the call.
At this time, Dr. Duewel’s mission asked him to remain in the homeland to take the leadership of the mission. Although his heart was in India, he agreed to remain in America, taking this as the Lord’s calling for him. It was several years before he was able to return to India for a visit. The Indian workers of OMS joyfully told him of increased numbers of souls saved and churches planted. God’s blessing on the work was evident. Rejoicing together, they gladly acknowledged that God’s strategy of increased prayer support was the secret of growth. Although Brother Duewel was unable to attentively carry on the strategy, getting renewed commitments each year, the blessing continued to flow as friends continued to pray. Today there are 2,000 churches planted by the workers of the mission, and thousands of Christian converts.
Brother Duewel suggested to us that we strengthen the Herald’s prayer base by asking for readers who would commit to pray daily for the Herald of His Coming, if not for 15 minutes daily, then for whatever time the Lord enabled. We enthusiastically embraced Brother Duewel’s suggestion, and the Herald Prayer Force was brought into being. It is open to all who will write us that they would like to be a daily prayer partner. Each quarter we send a newsletter with current requests. We also encourage prayer over the items frequently listed for prayer in the pages of Herald of His Coming. If you are already on the Herald Prayer Force and have not written us recently, please let us know of your continued interest in being included. We thank you warmly for your past prayer support and eagerly anticipate your continued participation on the Herald Prayer Force. We cannot overstress the importance of readers’ prayer support.
Herald Prayer Guide Updated
Some of you readers may not feel able to make a commitment to set aside a period of time daily specifically for Herald of His Coming, but you are willing to "make mention" in your prayers of this ministry of His. To assist you in covering the various personnel and aspects of the ministry for which prayer is needed we have printed a Herald Prayer Guide. This for the most part lists a single request for the English Herald and staff for each day of the month, plus the name of one international edition and the editor. A recent updating of the Herald Prayer Guide has been made. A copy will be sent gladly to any who write to request the Herald Prayer Guide.
Prayer! What a strong helping hand you extend to Herald of His Coming and to other ministries on your heart as you send up heartfelt prayer for them! God tells us that His eyes "run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward Him" (2 Chron. 16:9). Does not that Word inspire us to strive to meet the condition of a heart perfect toward God, that He might be strong in our lives and affairs? With His strength, we can bless and strengthen others. And surely that is the desire of the heart filled with the love of Jesus.
Being God’s Hand Extended
Following are two of the many opportunities that we together have to be God’s hand extended to help. A request came this week from a young lady overseas who wrote that her background was a poor, traditional and Muslim family. She had prayed and received Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. But she said, "I want to learn more about Christianity and God’s Word. Please help me learn more about Christ. I would like you to pray always for me…" Sense the hunger in this plea and grasp the opportunity to nurture a babe in Christ who might face opposition from her family!
At the other end of the age bracket, also in today’s overseas mail, is the letter of an elderly saint of eighty years. He had saved key articles from the Herald from the 1940’s until they were lost in wartime. Since the early days of Herald of His Coming he has been fasting and praying for revival with the Herald staff and remembering them and the Herald of His Coming ministry in prayer. He remains zealous for the Lord and asks packages of Heralds to distribute if we can bear with him and send them free of charge. His retirement pension isn’t being paid him because of the company’s and the country’s poor financial condition. But he writes, "Jesus is the answer to every problem in life." Great faith in a great God! And to us is given the opportunity to extend the helping hand of prayer to a fellow saint. If we imagine ourselves in his place, we will pray earnestly.
Your gifts along with your prayers are also your hand extended to give soul-saving, soul-edifying messages from God’s holy Word to brothers and sisters in Christ who otherwise would not obtain the Word their hearts thirst for and need. We all know what it is to come just as we are – without money – and buy and eat (Isa. 55:1). Not one of us could pay for the precious life in Christ which God provides. We must come humbly and receive by faith, freely, that which is far beyond price. Thank God He puts a generous, giving spirit in the hearts of His willing children who deeply appreciate that freely they have received, and they gladly, freely give. God bless each one of you making it possible for Herald of His Coming to be sent without price.
Folding Machine Supplied
We wish you might have stepped into the mailing room of Herald of His Coming when two folding machines and four young people were efficiently at work making the final fold on about 40,000 Herald of His Coming papers this month. The Herald papers come from the printer neatly folded in half, but a final fold into quarters is needed in order to fit them into envelopes for mailing. The noisiest machine and the slower of the two is the only machine we have had for the ten years or so that we have used a folding machine. It was kindly donated to us by a brother who had picked it up secondhand. The aging and hard-worked folding machine began to need repairs and there was a possibility it would give out any time. A Christian brother joined Rich and Jon Carmicheal in keeping it serving satisfactorily, while we asked help in praying for one to replace it.
The little worn machine is a convenient table model and is what is required to make the unique fold needed. Although various friends and dealers tried to help us find a model like it, there seemed to be none available anywhere. The make and model of the one we were using has been out of production for some time. Again and again Rich reminded the Lord that we needed one "just like the one we have." Many friends joined us in prayer. God brought it to pass! A used one was found of the same make and model as our old one, but it runs faster and more quietly. Jon made minor adjustments on the machine, and now, using the second folder along with the first, we are able to complete the folding work almost twice as fast. One of the young people feeds the papers into the folder, and another stacks the folded papers into containers, ready for the volunteers who come and put the papers into envelopes. We also acquired a second nonworking folding machine which will provide replacement parts when needed. Praise God for answered prayer! Thanks to all who prayed!