Matthew West - Into The Light


The Power of a Prayer

From Gerson…

Hello, my name is Gerson and I just turned 13.

Life used to be hard because my father was not a Christian but my mom was. Sometimes they would fight and yell, and I would just stand in a corner, crying. About two years ago my pastor asked the whole church to start praying for 24 hours. So I wrote down on a whiteboard what I wanted to pray about and these are the exact words I wrote: My father to be a Christian.

All of a sudden people started to pray about my father. Two months later, my pastor went to talk with my family and especially my dad, and man, what a talk! That very night, my dad accepted Christ in his heart. My mom and my little bro cried for joy and I just praised God with all my heart. My dad and I have been baptized in water, and we talk a lot about our God. I just hope the devil never destroys my family ever again. My brother loves reading the Bible and he is the best brother I will ever have. Now that is the story of my life.

Matthew Responds…

Do you ever doubt the power of prayer? Maybe you don’t feel as if you have received an answer to your requests as quickly as you would like. Ever find yourself wondering, “Does this really work? Does God really hear me when I call on Him?” Sometimes in our journeys of faith, our prayers seem to do little more than bounce off the ceiling, leaving us doubt-filled and faithless.

Still no job on the horizon.

Still no sign of your prodigal child.

Still no good report from your doctor.

The Psalms remind us that the only way to survive these “still no…” seasons is to “be still and know” that He is God and that He hears us when we pray. If we abide by this instruction, we will see the power of prayer at work with our own eyes and in His perfect timing. Many who have gone before us have experienced the power of a prayer. Consider Peter in prison:

Peter was kept in prison, but the church was earnestly praying to God for him.

The night before Herod was to bring him to trial, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains, and sentries stood guard at the entrance. Suddenly an angel of the Lord appeared and a light shone in the cell. He struck Peter on the side and woke him up. “Quick, get up!” he said, and the chains fell off Peter’s wrists (Acts 12:5-7).

The sick woman experienced the power of prayer when she crawled through a crowd just to touch Jesus’ garment:

And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years. She has suffered a great deal under the care of many doctors and had spent all she had, yet instead of getting better she grew worse. When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind Him in the crowd and touched his cloak, because she thought, “If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed.” Immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering.

At once Jesus realized that power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who touched my clothes?”

“You see the people crowding against you,” his disciples answered, “and yet you can ask, ‘Who touched me?’”

But Jesus kept looking around to see who had done it. Then the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell as his feet and, trembling with fear, told him the whole truth. He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be free from your suffering.”

The dying thief on the cross experienced the power of prayer when he reached out for forgiveness with his last breaths:

Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”

Jesus answered him, “Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise” (Luke 23:42-43)

And if you need to be encouraged by one more example of the power of prayer today, go back and reread Gerson’s story once more. With the faith of a child, this boy simply made his request known to God, believing that his prayer would be answered. And guess what? God heard his prayer and answered. What a defining moment in the story of this young boy’s life! A moment he will always be able to point to, remembering how the power of prayer helped to restore a family.

No matter how long your “still no…” list may be today, ask God to help you simply “be still and now” that He is God. In His perfect timing, all of your “still no...” situations will have their answers, and the story of your life will be living proof that prayer is a powerful thing.

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