Tonight was our Tuesday evening Men’s Prayer time. I haven’t attended for about a month being gone, so tonight was an enjoyable time praying with and for friends. Several guys face some hard times because of family sickness, kids not doing well spiritually and relationally, disunity in the extended family, and a host of other challenging circumstances. As we were praying I was thinking about how to pray for these friends most effectively and biblically.
We all tend to pray for life’s hard times that God will simply fix them and make them go away, and life will be good again. But it is obvious with most of the circumstances that we have been praying for, some for a long time, that hasn’t happened, at least not yet. I like to pray for things that I know will always get answered and get answered quickly. There are at least five prayer requests that fall into that category:
1. Strength is the most often prayed request in the Bible. God loves to give his strength to those who ask for it, and the more we ask the more He gives. In Isaiah 40:29-31 the word “wait” is synonymous with prayer. The promise in this passage is amazing. “God gives strength to the weary, and to him who lacks might He increases power. Though youths grow weary and tired, and vigorous young men stumble badly,
yet those who wait for the Lord will gain new strength; They will mount up with wings like eagles,
they will run and not get tired, they will walk and not become weary.”
The word “weary” is used three times in these three verses. In the midst of life’s hard times that is what happens, we get weary. There are literally hundreds of verses in the Bible that promise that strength will be given and weariness will be overcome when we pray.
My favorite story in the Bible is in 1 Samuel chapter 30. . . . “David and his men came to Ziklag. . . the Amalekites had made a raid. . . and had overthrown Ziklag and burned it with fire. . . and their wives and their sons and their daughters had been taken captive. . . they lifted their voices and wept until there was no strength in them to weep. . . David was greatly distressed because the people spoke of stoning him, for all the people were embittered, each one because of his sons and his daughters. But David strengthened himself in the Lord his God. . . David recovered all that the Amalekites had taken. . . whether small or great, sons or daughters, spoil or anything that they had taken for themselves; David brought it all back.”
Life is hard, and at times it seems unbearably hard. God doesn’t promise to make it easy, not even just a bit easier, but He does promise strength to bear up under it victorious, and then often we can fix things and make it better with His strength. “David brought it all back.”
I love this story, it is better than any John Wayne western.