top

Training to Pray With Great Power

Do you see great men and women of prayer and long to be that kind of prayer warrior? Do you want your prayer life to produce the same quantity and quality of fruit that theirs does?

It doesn’t come easy or without persistence or dedication. It takes training to become a powerful prayer warrior. Our prayer “muscles” require exercise and growth through constant practice. Perseverance is vital to prevailing prayer.

Spurgeon on Training to Pray With Great Power

In Flowers from a Puritan’s Garden, Charles Spurgeon writes,

No doubt by praying we learn to pray, and the more we pray the oftener we can pray, and the better we can pray. He who prays in fits and starts is never likely to attain to that effectual, fervent prayer which availeth much. Prayer is good, the habit to prayer is better, but the spirit of prayer is the best of all. It is in the spirit of prayer that we pray without ceasing, and this can never be acquired by the man who ceases to pray.

It is wonderful what distances men can run who have long practiced the art, and it is equally marvelous for what a length of time they can maintain a high speed after they have once acquired stamina, and skill in using their muscles.

Great power in prayer is within our reach, but we must go to work to obtain it. Let us never imagine that Abraham could have interceded so successfully for Sodom if he had not been all his lifetime in the practice of communion with God. Jacob’s all-night at Peniel was not the first occasion upon which he had met his God. We may even look upon our Lord’s most choice and wonderful prayer with his disciples before His Passion as the flower and fruit of His many nights of devotion, and of His often rising up a great while before day to pray.

A man who becomes a great runner has to put himself in training, and to keep himself in it; and that training consists very much of the exercise of running. Those who have distinguished themselves for speed have no suddenly leaped into eminence, but have long been runners.

If a man dreams that he can become mighty in prayer just when he pleases, he labors under a great mistake. The prayer of Elias which shut up heaven and afterwards opened its floodgates, was one of long series of mighty prevailings with God. Oh, that Christian men would remember this! Perseverance in prayer is necessary to prevalence in prayer.

Those great intercessors, who are not so often mentioned as they ought to be in connection with confessors and martyrs, were nevertheless the grandest benefactors of the Church; but it was only by abiding at the mercy-seat that they attained to be such channels of mercy to men.

We must pray to pray, and continue in prayer that our prayers may continue.

O thou, by whom we come to God, seeing thou hast thyself trod the way of prayer, and didst never turn from it, teach me to remain a suppliant as long as I remain a sinner, and to wrestle in prayer so long as I have to wrestle with the powers of evil. Whatever else I may outgrow, may I never dream that I may relax my supplications; for well I know that—

“Long as they live should Christians pray,
For only while they pray they live.”

— C. H. Spurgeon1

A Closing Prayer

Father, may we abide at the mercy seat and never retreat! May we persist in prayer and seize the power that is within our reach by going to work to obtain it.

Help us view the troubles and trials that have discouraged us not as curses but as invitations to Your training ground—as opportunities to develop the practice of communion with You, like Abraham before he pled for Sodom, or Jacob before his wrestling at Peniel. These heartaches we’re walking through aren’t without purpose. They’re here to help us become the men and women of prayer that we long to be. They’re here to help us develop our practice of communion with You. Akin to weights we use at the gym, they gradually strengthen us in prayer to the point where we can pray with great power! 

So help us cease being frustrated at our current trials and angry at You for allowing them. Help us embrace our sufferings for the gift that they are. May we capitalize on them and let them drive us to our knees to persevere in the habit and Spirit of prayer!

Thank you for the privilege of fasting—for it helps us develop the practice of prayer. It helps us draw near, abide at the mercy seat, and realize how much we need constant communion with You in prayer. Thank you for building our atrophied prayer muscles during these three glorious weeks.

Father, we want to be Abraham pleading for Sodom, Jacob overcoming at Peniel, Elijah shutting up the heavens and opening the floodgates! We long to prevail with You in prayer! We ask for your help and enabling. Give us the determination, the perseverance, the commitment… and the sensitivity to the Spirit of prayer and supplication (Zech. 12:10) that we might pray Your will into being here on earth! (Mt. 6:10) In Jesus’ name, so be it.

“Devote yourselves to prayer…”
Colossians 4:2, HCSB

A Moment of Worship: Pray

Pray by Booklyn Tabernacle
From the Album: Pray

Listen on Apple Music | Download from iTunes
Listen on Prime Music | Purchase from Amazon

Bible Reading: Luke 11:5-13, 18:1-8; John 15:5; Colossians 4:2; 1 Thessalonians 5:17-18

Questions:

  • Do you see great men and women of prayer and long to be that kind of prayer warrior? Do you want your prayer life to produce the same quantity and quality of fruit that theirs does?
  • Are you praying in fits and starts, never likely to attain to that effectual, fervent prayer which availeth much?
  • Do you dream that you can become mighty in prayer whenever you please?
  • Are you working to obtain the great power in prayer that is within your reach?
  • Are you persevering or relaxing in prayer? 
  • Do you view your sufferings as God’s training ground for prayer?
  • Are you letting your trials usher you to the mercy seat and cause you to abide in communion with God?
  • What problems in your life right now are you worrying about rather than praying about? What issues are you trying to solve by natural means instead of taking them to God in prayer? 

TweetablesMore Tweetables

  • “He who prays in fits and starts is never likely to attain to that effectual, fervent prayer which availeth much. … Perseverance in prayer is necessary to prevalence in prayer.” — Spurgeon Click to tweet Tweet
  • “Great power in prayer is within our reach, but we must go to work to obtain it.” — Spurgeon Click to tweet Tweet
  • “Let us never imagine that Abraham could have interceded so successfully for Sodom if he had not been all his lifetime in the practice of communion with God.” — Spurgeon Click to tweet Tweet
  • “The prayer of Elias which shut up heaven and afterwards opened its floodgates, was one of long series of mighty prevailings with God…. Perseverance in prayer is necessary to prevalence in prayer.” — Spurgeon Click to tweet Tweet

 

RELATED ARTICLES ON PRAYER

FASTING DAY EIGHTEEN FROM THE ARCHIVES

verticle space



_____________

  1. Spurgeon, Charles Haddon. Illustrations and Meditations; or, Flowers from a Puritan’s Garden, distilled and dispensed . London, Passmore & Alabaster. Kindle Edition. Locations 4343-4366.

Note: This book is also available to read on Google Books


 

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, Shades of Grace will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Leave a Reply

top