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Power through Prayer

Paraphrased excerpts from Power Through Prayer by E.M. Bounds.

“We are on a constant search for better methods, more clever plans, and new ways to organize in order to advance the church. The church is looking for better methods; God is looking for better men and women. The church needs men and women whom the Holy Spirit can use—men and women of prayer—mighty in prayer. The Holy Spirit does not flow through methods, but through people; people wholly yielded to Him.

The personal character of leaders has more to do with the revolution of nations than any other factor. The character and conduct of followers of Christ have more to do with the impact of the Gospel on a nation than any other factor. The individual makes the servant of the Gospel. God must make the individual. The individual, the whole individual, lies behind the work of God. Our work is not the performance of an hour; it is the outflow of a life. Our work for God must be a thing of life. Our work grows, because we grow. Our work is holy, because we are holy.

Everything depends on the spiritual character of Christ’s servant. We must impersonate the Gospel. It is not great talents nor great learning nor great preachers and teachers and leaders that God needs, but men and women great in holiness, great in faith, great in love, and great in fidelity. Such people can mold a generation for God!

Prayer is the greatest weapon of the servant of God. Prayer places us in God’s presence—the place we become holy. Prayer calls upon and takes hold of the power of God. The real work of God is made in the closet. The man or woman of God is made in the closet. Our life and most profound convictions are born in secret communication with God. Prayer makes God’s servant. The pride of learning; the pride of past accomplishment; the pride of the newest trend; and the pride of our own creative genius all set themselves against the dependent humility of prayer. If we do not make prayer a mighty factor in our lives and ministry, our impact for God will be weak, powerless and without effect on the lost world.”

“Devote yourselves to prayer.” Colossians 4:2 There is a danger in reading a challenge like that above. The danger is to feel overwhelmed with a sense of guilt over past or current failures, or to feel inadequate with regard to potential future victories. Lay those feelings aside. Instead, simply flee to God’s presence, let Him change you and enjoy His company. In Psalm 16:11, David praises God, “You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.”

©2011 Rob Fischer