Return Sweet Hour of Prayer
“In seasons of distress and grief….
My soul has often found relief…
And oft escaped the tempter’s snare…
By thy return sweet hour of prayer.”
William W. Walford, a blind English country Parson of the 19th Century, wrote these words.
The practice of consistent prayer has vanished from the lifestyle of so many Christians. When this occurs, we are left spiritually impotent and woefully vulnerable, to not only satanic attack, but we become victims of our own weaknesses inherent in our humanity.
A Christian with no prayer life stands armorless, with no God fellowship, and the closeness with your Creator and Redeemer that comes through prayer. An old saying that is fraught with truth says, “More things are wrought by prayer than this world dreams of.”
Moses’s prayer for God to “show him his glory” compelled God to put Moses in the cleft of a rock, and God then put His hand over Moses.Protection doesn’t get better than that.
Daniel’s “three times a day,” consistent prayer life got him thrown into a den of the most ravenous beasts on earth, a den of lions. But prayer beckons angels, prayer gives lions lockjaw, and prayer changed the King’s outlook and brought about the demise of Daniel’s enemies.
Acts chapter 12 tells us of Peter’s imprisonment and Herod’s declaration of Peter’s forthcoming execution the following morning. Verse 5, though, is the beginning of a Divine stay of execution and one of the greatest escapes in recorded history.
Verse 5 simply says, “But prayer was made without ceasing by the church unto God for him.” An Angel was dispatched, guards were placed in deep sleep, prison gates opened of their own accord, and Peter went to the prayer meeting. Herod would later die in disgrace, but Peter would keep preaching, and the church would grow and flourish.
Jesus prayed so consistently and had such authority that after observing Him pray day after day, the disciples asked Him, “Lord teach us to pray.” He did, and they were never the same.
Now we can try to emulate and imitate the rest of the world in our attempts to build and grow the church. We can offer entertainment and all the bells and whistles that titillate and bring momentary excitement to prospective crowds. But the great revivals of history, and the outpouring of miraculous redemption upon the lost, have begun through consistent and fervent prayer.
Lord, teach us to pray. Let us pray.
Dr. David M. Griffis