Faithful In Prayer
By Lois J. Stucky
"The fight is on, O Christian soldier...." Congregations don’t seem to sing that song nowadays like we did some years ago. But the battle rages on between righteousness and sin, between faith and unbelief, between the true God and the false gods of this age, etc. In fact, the battle seems to grow steadily stronger. Thank God we can respond to God’s call and put ourselves loyally on His side and know that we are on the winning side, for the ultimate victory is His!
In his article on pages one and three, James Stewart calls to our remembrance that prayer for revival involves spiritual warfare. The fact that prayer so often gets crowded out or interrupted and that it is not easy to keep focus during prayer, is part of the battle. The tremendous blessings we pray for when we pray for revival -- the invigorating and empowering of the Church, and the resulting salvation of many unsaved -- are viciously opposed by the enemy Satan. And no wonder! In revival Satan’s kingdom of evil suffers serious loss. But hallelujah, God’s Kingdom makes great gains!
W. C. Moore, co-founder of Herald of His Coming, exhorts us in his article on page 6 to determinedly hold fast our confidence in the promises of God and to invest the time and energy in prayer it takes to pray through and see revival blessings of Heaven flood down. Might the articles in this issue help us all to call ourselves away from the things of this world and put ourselves into the prayer battle with greater self-sacrifice than ever before. We encourage you to take note of God’s gracious promises given in Brother Moore’s article. Not only take note, but "take hold" of them (Isaiah 56:4). Do not grow weary in taking them to God and beseeching him to do as He has said (1 Chronicles 17:23).
Our Lord Jesus Christ set the example for His followers. He was early at prayer (Mark 1:35); at times He prayed all night (Luke 6:12). He prayed with "strong crying and tears" (Hebrews 5:7). And think of it, He is even now praying for us in our weakness and need! (Romans 8:34). How it might inspire us if we could tune in to His prayers!
Our Lord’s motive ever was to get His Father’s will done and His Name glorified here on earth as in Heaven. God has great plans as we near the end of this age and prepare for the coming of the next. His eyes run to and fro throughout the earth to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose hearts are perfect toward Him (2 Chronicles 16:9), those united with Him in motive and purpose. Let’s seek to be counted worthy as a loyal soldier in the Praying Battalion of the King of kings! We are not able for this except as we arm ourselves in His armor and withstand and stand in His strength.
Will we let God’s call to prayer disturb our ease and cut into our pleasant pastimes? While He is patient with our petty interests, how His heart must grieve to think of the greater things we could be doing and asking of His Almighty Self. How much greater things His heart longs to give and to do!
Sister Meek, a mighty prayer warrior at Herald of His Coming, long with the Lord, used to plead earnestly for God’s help in prayer, that as a prayer group we would ask "for nations rather than for toys." How limited our vision tends to be! We fail to grasp the seriousness of this hour and the issues and the souls at stake. In these matters our prayers need to make a telling difference.
The other day, Suanne Grey, editor of the Spanish Herald, came from the files of back issues of Herald of His Coming, with a big smile on her face and a fresh gleam in her eye. She had just glimpsed the title of an article by Sarah Foulkes Moore, co-founder of Herald of His Coming. It read, "Press into the Gap and Hold It for the Lord!" My heart leaped at the challenge with Suanne’s. What a burning heart Sister Moore had! What zeal! "A soldier heart," Brother Moore used to say of his beloved companion.
When asked as a Bible College graduate what she anticipated her place in God’s service would be, Sister Moore responded -- "A stander in the gap and a maker-up of the hedge." This call came to her from Isaiah 22:30, where the Lord God said, "I sought for a man among them, that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before Me for the land, that I should not destroy it," and it is followed by those heart-piercing words, "but I found none. Therefore have I poured out Mine indignation upon them."
None of us wants to fail God, but as Brother Moore writes, most of us have. I feel this keenly for myself. But as Brother Moore further writes, we must not become discouraged about it. Rather, let us humble ourselves before Him and get His forgiveness and His help in doing better. Let us take to heart the exhortations of the articles in this issue. Might God expand our hearts, our prayers and our faith so each of us can do his or her part fully!
And let us thank God and take courage to see many more Christians joining the praying ranks. Might God preserve and fan the least flicker into a glowing flame!