Items For Praise And Prayer
By Lois J. Stucky
The Apostle Paul reminds us, as he reminded Timothy, that God has “saved us, and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace” (2 Tim. 1:9). How blessed that God has included His saved ones in His grand and glorious purposes that outlast this world! We are saved from wandering aimlessly through life in self-centered living for personal purposes. Our life is not a random, hit-or-miss life of chance. When we yield our lives to God, He saves us and gives us a place in helping to bring to pass His plan of the ages. The world does not sense this. Our lives may seem as ordinary as theirs. But eternity will reveal there were those who lived far more significantly than was obvious to others.
The Apostle Paul’s calling was to be a preacher, and an apostle and a teacher (verse 11). Many of us are not gifted of God as Paul was for so lofty a ministry. But we are nevertheless called to some good purpose. God needs a host of us to make our greatest contribution to His plan by our praying. God wants to do great and glorious things in this last hour. He wants to prepare His people to be ready for that magnificent day of Christ’s return to take the rule unto Himself. The very important things leading up to the climax, He brings to pass through prayer. The enemy’s evil plan must be brought down; God’s will and plan must be implemented. A host of praying people is necessary to bring to pass all God’s purposes.
We fit into God’s plan by keeping submitted to His will and by maintaining faith in His working in and through our lives. We must be alert on behalf of our children and grandchildren as well. God has committed to us a responsibility for shepherding them into His plan and purpose in their early years.
Brother Moore spoke often of his gratitude to his mother and of her faith and prayers for him. As a young child, he suffered a serious liver ailment. The doctor gave him up, but his parents did not. Through prayer and very attentive care, he recovered. Later at age eighteen, Brother Moore told us, he became “ornery” and left home. His mother prayed fervently. She told him that she felt God had raised him up from that childhood crisis “for some good purpose,” and she seemed determined that the devil would not frustrate God’s good purpose. Shortly after leaving home, Brother Moore gave his life to the Lord. Both parents died not long after that. But Brother Moore, whose life ultimately helped many hundreds of thousands through Herald of His Coming, attributed in great part God’s hand of blessing on his life, and his usefulness to the Kingdom of God, to his mother’s faith and prayers for him.
It is very easy for children and young people in this day and age to get off track and miss the mark of God’s calling—unless someone has a vision for them and prays and trusts accordingly. Faith and prayer drastically alter the direction of a young life.
You may need to give yourself afresh to the Lord to be an instrument He can use. It may make of you an unsung burden bearer, but you will be beloved of Him.
No one need ask if there is need for his or her faith and prayers. Think of the world of lost sinners! God is not willing that any should perish. Yet many wait to hear the Gospel of Christ for the first time. The many efforts to reach to the ends of the earth by the year 2000 need strongest prayer.
Does the Church need prayer? Our Lord Jesus lets us know through His messages to the churches as recorded in Revelation, chapters 2 and 3, what His expectations are for the Church: fervent love, dedication unto death, lives of purity, faithfulness in keeping His Word, holding fast the faith, being alive in the Spirit—in short, living a life of overcoming sin, self and Satan. Is this what we see in the Church as a whole today? Does the Church need prayer? Do you have faith and willingness to pray for the Church? The glorious Church, ready for her exalted Head, is part of God’s plan. Preaching the Gospel in all the world is part of His plan. Are you fitting in to do your part?
Friends, it is as though we are on the last lap of the race. You know how important the last lap is. All reserves and strong exertion are put into winning. No one is foolish enough to loiter on the last lap if he has any thought of winning. It’s time for all-out effort!
The Lord has need of you! Herald of His Coming has need of you! We are eager to move ahead for the Lord as fully as He enables and provides. There are many opportunities to reach farther with the Gospel. More prayers, more dedicated workers would enable us to grasp more of these opportunities. We have the good example of some who have gone before us. Will we follow in their train as they followed Christ, who went all the way to Calvary?