Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord.
Ask, Seek, Knock
Jesus was speaking about prayer when He said that we are to ask, seek, and knock when praying (Matt. 7:7-12). Jesus is saying that we must be intentional and proactive in asking for help, and this includes asking for the prayers of others when you have a financial need, when you are sick, when you are experiencing relationship problems, when you need a job or a better job, or anything imaginable. Now that we know that we are to seek the prayers of others, why not ask? The only reason many of us don’t have answers to prayers might be because we don’t ask others to pray for us. Why wouldn’t we ask? Is it a matter of pride? I don’t know the answer to that for you. I used to be shy about asking, but I bet it was really pride. However, today I am not shy or pride-filled when in need of the prayers of others. Therefore, ask, seek, and knock.
Paul was not shy about asking for prayer. He really felt the need for it and didn’t hesitate to ask. Paul requested prayer from the church at Ephesus for the words to plainly speak about Christ and to do so fearlessly before the Gentiles (Eph. 6:19) and insisted that we ought to be praying at all times in the Spirit (Eph. 6:18). He also sought the prayers of others for open doors for the Gospel (Col. 4:3), that he would have free course for the Gospel in being delivered from the unreasonably wicked men who constantly hindered him (2 Thess. 3:1), and for prayer for him and those who were evangelizing with him (1 Thess. 5:25). Paul never hesitated to request the prayers of others, and this might have been the reason that he was so effective in his evangelistic missionary trips.
The Apostles: Men of Prayer
Paul prayed incessantly, including one time when someone was gravely sick (Acts 28:8), once as a prisoner praying for all those in his presence at his trial that they would be saved (Acts 26:29) because Paul believed in the effectual power of the fervent prayers by godly saints, which is what James basically taught (James 5:16). If you read the Book of Acts, you’ll read about Paul and Silas being freed from jail, people being healed, some raised from the dead, and one thing after another–all from the prayers of the saints. Do you ask others to pray for you when you need it? If so, how often do you ask for prayers? If not often enough, why not more often? Don’t think there’s anything too small to ask for in prayer because to God, everything is small.
A Closing Prayer
Here is my prayer to You, Great God in heaven: I thank You that I can be heard, that my Intercessor is Jesus Christ, and that I know You hear me because of Him. For Your Son and His sacrifice, which enables my prayers to be heard, I thank You. In His name I pray.
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