I’ve joined a class for sitting exercise. We remain seated on chairs but exercise all parts of our body. I’m hoping it will strengthen the muscles in my back and make me a little round-shouldered. (though having fractured a few vertebra that is probably unlikely) If I exercise well I might also lose a little weight off my hips. At the end of 55 minutes I’m quite exhausted but they say no gain without pain.

I wonder do I exercise my spiritual muscles by praying and reading my Bible? Like physical exercise it takes determination and regular habits. I’m not telling you that I pray for 55 minutes but I do spend time with God listening to Him and reading His word. I feel enriched by time spent like this. God loves me and enjoys having communion with me. What a thought that is!

I Pray

The other day I was asked what I did towards a certain Christian work that was being done in our church. I replied, ‘I only pray.’ As you can imagine I was soon told off. There is no ‘only’ about praying. No church work would come to completion without those who pray for it. Prayer is an important way that God accomplishes His work. He wants to hear from us; He wants to talk with us. Prayer moves the hand that moves the world. It was Alfred Lord Tennyson who said’ ‘more things are wrought by prayer than this world dreams of.’

It has been told that two old ladies in America prayed consistently for Billy Graham when he was a young lad and as we say the rest is history. We all know in our own lives that miracles have happened because we prayed. So I don’t now say ‘I only prayer.’ I say ‘I have the privilege of being able to pray.’

Praying for Others

The other day I read of someone who kept a payer diary where anyone they knew who had a birthday, they prayed for them the whole birthday month. They also asked if there was anything specific they could pray for them. Being an ordered kind of person, I’ve tried various systems to pray for others. There have been shortcomings in every method.

I think this idea appeals to me, but there are many people with needs whose birthday I don’t know. I so easily forget to pray for certain people or I have their request on a piece of paper and then lose it. I’ve also kept names on index cards and prayed for one person each day , but it took me too long to get through the pile.

I also feel it is not right to spend all my time praying for others, I also need to just sit and enjoy time in the presence of God. I know that God answers every prayer we make, but sometimes we don’t see the results for a long period of time, so making a list of answered prayers would only show prayers that have been answered to my satisfaction.

I believe the method we use to pray for others isn’t important, it will be different for everyone. The most important thing is that we do pray without ceasing and keep in communication with God. He so wants to have fellowship with us.

One More Found

We probably all have friends and family who once faithfully followed Jesus but lately seem to have fallen away. Often our task is to pray for their return. In many instances we will not be able to speak to them or contact them, our task is to pray. I refrain from using the word ‘just’. Our prayers on earth have so much power in heaven. Luke 15 tells of the angels in heaven rejoicing when these people return to the fold.

I believe this parable points to the ‘found’ who have become ‘ lost’. as well as those who have never been ‘found’. I also believe that once someone is truly saved they cannot be lost for ever, but I know there are different opinions about this. Along with the angels we also can rejoice at these transformations, whether our prayers have been involved or not. How uplifting it is to hear of people praying for many years and their prayers finally being answered. Like all of us, I have a number of people on my list.