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The Power of Prayer

"[We] ought always to pray, and not to faint."

(Luke 18:1)

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This page contains scriptures, quotes and word studies (at the bottom of the page) regarding prayer, but they are of no use if we do not pray. May I have the privilege praying for you?

Click Here to E-mail your prayer requests to me. I will agree with you in prayer.

Lord, to You I feel such gratitude
for all the men and women who have preceded me
and left me such a legacy
of grace and glory to Your Name.

Read The Great Classics on Prayer Online —

William Law (1686-1761)

The Spirit of Prayer

E. M. Bounds (1835-1913)

The Power of Prayer
The Necessity of Prayer
The Possibilities of Prayer
The Purpose of Prayer
Power Through Prayer

"Desire gives fervor to prayer.
The soul cannot be listless when some great desire fixes and inflames it . . .
Strong desires make strong prayers . . .
The neglect of prayer is the fearful token of dead spiritual desires . . .
There can be no true praying without desire."
E. M. Bounds: Man of Prayer

"I have read many books on prayer, studied prayer and attended seminars on prayer. I have prayed tens of thousands of hours privately, and met weekly with beloved friends over years and years to pray. I have attended church prayer meetings, prayed at church railings, at community prayer meetings and while watching or listening to tragedies on the nightly news. I have prayed with thousands of people in large groups and hundreds of individual friends and strangers in intimate settings and casual conversations; face-to-face, over the telephone, in restaurants, in malls, in parking lots, in prisons, in foreign countries, on planes and through letters and e-mail. I have prayed walking, standing, sitting, rocking babies, kneeling and lying on my face. I have journaled prayer, spoken prayer, conversed in prayer, sung prayer, shouted prayer, whispered prayer, groaned prayer and wept prayer. In all of this prayer over so many years I have learned one thing. One single thing . . . and this is that the power of prayer is not in the words I pray, the place I pray, the way I pray, how loud I pray or how long I pray, but in the One to Whom I pray." Anne Murchison

"Countless people pray far more than they know. Often they have such a "stained-glass" image of prayer that they fail to recognize what they are experiencing is prayer and so condemn themselves for not praying." Richard J. Foster

"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God." Phil 4:6 NIV

"Waiting is one of God's primary appointed means for becoming like Jesus. And its main expression and posture is
prayer. Prayer is the womb we curl into, the dark, closed,
often silent place where we are formed in Christlikeness,
where strand by tangled strand our willfulness and selfishness is unraveled and stitch by painstaking stitch the Spirit's works is knit together in us.

"Unceasing prayer is a cultivated attentiveness to the God who is always and everywhere with us. Speaking all of our words, thinking all of our thoughts, taking all our actions, in the mindfulness that God hears, knows, sees. Praying without ceasing, then, is not so much something we do. It is a way we are, the way we inhabit our skin, move in the world. It is simply being awake to the reality that, though we can't see it all we know by faith it is there . . . It is a constant awareness. It is a continual, though usually silent, dialogue. It is a fixed habit of mind, a conscious and deliberate gesturing toward and response to God that after long practice becomes unconscious and instinctive." Mark Buchanan Your God is Too Safe.

"To clasp the hands in prayer is the beginning of an uprising against the disorder of the world." Karl Barth

"The discussion of prayer is so great that it requires the Father to reveal it, His firstborn Word to teach it, and the Spirit to enable us to think and speak rightly of so great a subject." Origen

"Lord, I know not what I ought to ask of you. O, Father, give to your child what he himself knows not how to ask. Teach me to pray. Pray yourself in me." Francis Fenelon

"More things are wrought by prayer than this world dreams of." Alfred Lord Tennyson (1809-1892)

"Let us not see the face of man today till we have seen Jesus." Charles Spurgeon

"It is awesome to contemplate the physical power of the hydrogen bomb. A few ounces of material, carefully controlled, can exert a power of millions of tons! Properly harnessed this power can accomplish untold good. But there is a power that far transcends that of the hydrogen bomb. It is immeasurably more important because it is spiritual rather than physical. This power is the power of prayer." Paul C. Witt

"Lord, I want to pray with greater force than I want to curse. I want to forgive with greater force than I want to punish.
I want to give with greater force than I want to take."
Adapted from a poem by Alekos Panagulis

"Intercessory prayer is exceedingly prevalent. What wonders it has wrought! The Word of God teems with its marvellous deeds. Believer, thou hast a mighty engine in thy hand, use it well, use it constantly, use it with faith, and thou shalt surely be a benefactor to thy brethren." Charles Spurgeon (1834-1892)

"Identification with God is the key to intercession." Oswald Chambers (1874-1917)

"Prayer is the falling of a tear." Oswald Chambers (1874-1917)

"We may pray most when we say least, and we may pray least when we say most." St. Augustine of Hippo. (354-430 A.D.)

"He who fails to pray does not cheat God. He cheats himself." George Failing

"Prevailing prayer takes the Christian to Mount Carmel, and enables him to cover heaven with clouds of blessing, and earth with floods of mercy. Prevailing prayer bears the Christian aloft to Pisgah, and shows him the inheritance reserved; it elevates us to Tabor and transfigures us, till in the likeness of his Lord, as he is, so are we also in this world. If you would reach to something higher than ordinary grovelling experience, look to the Rock that is higher than you, and gaze with the eye of faith through the window of importunate prayer. When you open the window on your side, it will not be bolted on the other." Charles Spurgeon

"[If] my people who are called by My name humble themselves and pray, and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, will forgive this sin, and will heal their land" (2 Chr. 7:14).

"A man is powerful on his knees." Corrie ten Boom (1892-1983)

"God will either give you what you ask, or something far better." Robert Murray McCheyne (l813-1843)


These numbers are way better than 911.
Pray the promises of God.

When in sorrow, call Hebrews 5:7-8
When men fail you, call Ps. 27, Ps. 35
If you want to be fruitful, call John 15,
 Rom. 5:3-5, 2 Cor. 7:10, Jas. 1:2-4
When you have sinned, call Ps. 51, 2 Cor. 7:10, Jas. 4:6-10
When you worry, call Mt. 6:19-34
When you are in danger, call Ps. 91
When God seems far away, call Ps. 139
When your faith needs stirring, call Heb.11
When you are lonely and fearful, call Ps.23
When you grow bitter and critical, call 1 Cor. 13
For Paul's secret to happiness, call Col. 3:12-17
For idea of Christianity, call 2 Cor. 5:15-19
When you feel down and out, call Rom.8:31-39
When you want peace and rest, call Mt. 11:25-30
When the world seems bigger than God, call Ps. 73
When you want Christian assurance, call Rom. 8:1-30
When you leave home for labor or travel, call Ps. 121
When your prayers grow narrow or selfish, call Ps. 67
For great invention/opportunity, call Is. 55
When you want courage for a task, call Josh.1
How to get along with fellowmen, call Rom. 12
When you think of investments/returns,
call Mk. 10, Lk. 11, Is.55
If you are depressed, call Ps. 27
If your pocketbook is empty, call Psa. 37
If your losing confidence in people, call 1 Cor. 13
If people seem unkind, call Jn. 15
If discouraged about your work, call Ps.126
If you find the world growing small, and yourself great, call Psa.19

Emergency numbers may be dialed direct, no operator assistance is necessary. All lines are open to heaven 24 hours a day! Feed your faith, and doubt will starve to death!

"He who dwells in the shelter of the
Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, He is
my refuge and my fortress, my God in whom I trust."(Psalm 91:1-2)

"A person cannot stumble when he is on his knees."

"Prayer does not equip us for greater works—prayer IS the work. When we labor in prayer, from God's perspective there are always results. What an astonishment it will be, once the veil is finally lifted, to see all the souls that have been reaped through our prayers, simply because we have been in the habit of taking our orders from Jesus Christ."

"The lukewarmness of our prayers is the source of all our other infidelities." Francois Fenelon

"Long before an infant can speak, he can ask; he does not need to use words in order to ask for what he wants. No one among us is incapacitated from asking. Prayers need not be fancy. When we pray, the simpler our prayers are, the better. The plainest, humblest language that expresses our meaning is the best." Charles Spurgeon

"And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint." (Luke 18:1)

"At the profoundest depths in life, men talk not about God but with God." D. Elton Trueblood

"God is not a cosmic bellboy for whom we can press a button to get things." Harry Emerson Fosdick (1878-1969)

"If ever one born of woman might have lived without prayer, it was our spotless, perfect Lord, and yet none was ever so much in supplication as He! Such was His love to His Father, that He loved much to be in communion with Him: such was His love for His people, that He desired to be much in intercession for them." Charles Spurgeon (1834-1892)

"Certain thoughts are prayers. There are moments when, whatever be the attitude of the body, the soul is on its knees." Victor Hugo (1802-1885)

"Between the humble and contrite heart and the majesty of heaven, there are no barriers; the only password is prayer." Hosea Ballou (1771-1852)

"He who has learned to pray has learned the greatest secret of a holy and happy life." William Law (1686-1761)

"Praying is not getting but becoming." Sidney Greenberg

"No words are recorded of the woman who washed the feet of Jesus with her tears. All she had to offer Him was an extravagant outpouring of wordless weeping and repentance, which is recounted and uniquely memorialized by the Lord. This is mostly all we have to bring Him in the light of Who He Is and who we are."  Anne Murchison

"The tears of John, which were his liquid prayers, were so far as he was concerned, the sacred keys by which the sealed book was opened (Rev. 5:4). Charles H. Spurgeon (1834-1892)

"I am beginning to see that much of praying is grieving." Henri Nouwen (1932-1996)

"And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints." Eph 6:18NIV

"Prayer is the way that the life of God in us is nourished." Oswald Chambers (1874-1917)

"Prayer is not an exercise. It is the life of the saint." Oswald Chambers (1874-1917)

"God keeps a file for our prayers—they are not blown away by the wind, they are treasured in the King's archives. This is the registry in the court of heaven wherein every prayer is recorded. Tried believer, thy Lord hath a tear-bottle in which the costly drops of sacred grief are put away, and a book in which thy holy groanings are numbered. By-and-by, thy suit shall prevail." Oswald Chambers (1874-1917)

"Prayer enlarges the heart until it is capable of containing God's gift of Himself." Mother Teresa (1910-1998)

"Prayer is the pulse of life." Andrew Murray (1828-1917)

"Prayer requires more of the heart than the tongue." Adam Clarke  (1762-1832)

"Prayer is exhaling the spirit of man and inhaling the spirit of God." Edwin Keith

"The best prayers often have more groans than words." John Bunyan (1628-1688)

"The fewer the words the better the prayer." German Proverb

"There is a great deal of prayer that comes from actual disbelief in the atonement." Oswald Chambers

"If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. Now mine eyes shall be open, and mine ears attentive unto the prayer that is made in this place" (2 Chr. 7:14-15).

"Something of my old self—my old, bad life—and the old Adam in me, rises up, and will not let me pray." Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1887)

"The wish to pray is a prayer in itself." Georges Bernanos (1888-1948)

"A satellite signal communicates from one site to a satellite a 100 miles in the sky. It is then relayed to many receivers around the world, reaching millions of lives. The network of praying saints can be likened to the modern technology of transmitting satellite signals, only in reverse. God transmits His heart's desires from heaven to millions of praying believers on earth, who then transmit their prayers back to the ever-present God who reigns over all. He in turn reaches down to touch every soul on earth in answer to our prayers, allowing us the awesome privilege of participating in His eternal plan." Anne Murchison

"There are two doorkeepers to the house of prayer, and Sorrow is more on the alert to open than her grandson Joy." George MacDonald (1824-1905)

"To clasp the hands in prayer is the beginning of an uprising against the disorder of the world."  Karl Barth (1886-1968)

"We are ill-taught if we look for results only in the earthlies when we pray. A praying saint performs far more havoc among the unseen forces of darkness than we have the slightest notion of." Oswald Chambers (1874-1917)

"To God we use the simplest, shortest words we can find because eloquence is only air and noise to him." Frederick William Robertson  (1816-1853)

"True prayers are like carrier pigeons: from heaven they came, they are only going home." Charles Spurgeon (1834-1892)

"To pray 'in Jesus' name' means to pray in his spirit, in his compassion, in his love, in his outrage, in his concern. In other words, it means to pray a prayer that Jesus himself might pray." Kenneth L. Wilson

"You cannot truly intercede through prayer if you do not believe in the reality of redemption." Oswald Chambers

"I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone." 1 Tim 2:1 NIV

"We shall never sing, 'Gloria in Excelsis' except we pray to God de profundis; out of the depths must we cry, or we shall never behold glory in the highest." Charles Spurgeon

The Four Ingredients of Prayer: Thanks, help, oops and wow! Anonymous

"How can you expect God to speak in that gentle and inward voice which melts the soul when you are making so much noise with your rapid reflections?" Francis Fenelon (1651-1715)

"Prayer is not flight; prayer is power. Prayer does not deliver a man from some terrible situation; prayer enables a man to face and to master the situation." William Barclay (1907-1978)

"The correct concept is to think of prayer as the breath in our lungs and the blood from our hearts. Our blood flows and our breathing continues "without ceasing"; we are not even conscious of it, but it never stops. And we are not always conscious of Jesus keeping us in perfect oneness with God, but if we are obeying Him, He always is. Prayer is not an exercise, it is the life of the saint." Oswald Chambers

"Many people have a very strangely childish notion, that 'praying in the name of Christ' means simply the addition of the words 'through Jesus Christ our Lord' at the end of their prayers. But depend upon it, they do not by adding these words, or any words, bring it about that their prayers should be in the name of Christ. To pray in the name of Christ means to pray in such a way as represents Christ. The representative always must speak in the spirit and meaning of those for whom he speaks. If Christ is our representative, that must be because He speaks our wishes, or what we ought to make our wishes; and if we are to pray in the name of Christ, that means that we are, however far off, expressing His wishes and intentions." Charles Gore

"He prays well who is so absorbed with God that he does not know he is praying." François de Sales

"If you plead God's value as the source of your hope instead of pleading your value as the source of God's hope, then his unwavering commitment to his own value engages all his heart for your protection and joy." John Piper

"The Spirit helps us in our infirmities. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express." (Rom. 8:26 NIV)

"There are ideas in our hearts, there are wishes, there are aspirations, there are groanings, there are sighings that the world knows nothing about; but God knows them. So words are not always necessary. When we cannot express our feelings except in wordless groanings, God knows exactly what is happening." David Martyn Lloyd-Jones

"The Eternal hears what my heart cannot utter,
Hears the voice of pain so deep, so total,
Hears the voice of longings cried out in the night,
Of dreams evaporated,
Of fears so terrible, paralyzing.

Yes the Eternal hears.
He hears the cacophony,
The discord of my heart strings.
And as the piano tuner tunes his beloved instrument,
So the Eternal tunes my heart,
Until at last His music is born:
A concerto plays inside me.

Claire Rankin Lewis

"That the king should say to the petitioner, 'Bring your case before me, and I will grant your desire,' is kindness. But for him to say, 'I will put it into proper words so that your petition shall be framed acceptably,' this is goodness at its utmost stretch. This is precisely what the Holy Spirit does for us." Charles Spurgeon
"Heavy burdens are taking their toll.
I've come in search of peace—
contentment to fill my heart.
Holy Spirit, please intercede,
I don't know where to start.

I fall on my knees
and cry, 'Abba, Father.'
I surrender my soul."

Tammie Johnson-Tachick

Above the traffic noise You hear.
You listen to my heart,
You see it squeezed cold
in memories that hurt, constrict;
in dreams stalled, stopped.

You see and wait.
Interceding Spirit,
Holy Ghost of God,
Help me today.
When I can't pray, You do,
in groans and sighs,
in heartfelt psalms,
syntax of heaven
too deep for words.
Help me today."

Glenn Settle

"Guard your steps as you go to the house of God, and draw near to listen rather than to offer the sacrifice of fools; for they do not know they are doing evil.  Do not be hasty in word or impulsive in thought to bring up a matter in the presence of God. For God is in heaven and you are on the earth; therefore let your words be few." (Ecc. 5:l-2)

Bitter and Sweet
John Newton (1725-1807)

Often at the mercy-seat,
While calling on thy name,
 Swarms of evil thoughts I meet,
Which fill my soul with shame.
Agitated in my mind,
Like a feather in the air,
Can I thus a blessing find?
My soul, can this be pray'r?

But when Christ, my Lord and Friend,
Is pleas'd to show his pow'r
All at once my troubles end,
And I've a golden hour;
Then I see his smiling face,
Feel the pledge of joys to come:
Often, Lord, repeat this grace
Till thou shalt call me home.

Sweet Hour of Prayer
Words: William Walford (1845)
Music: William B. Bradbury (1861)

"Sweet hour of prayer, sweet hour of prayer, that calls me from a world of care,
and bids me at my Father's throne make all my wants and wishes known;
in seasons of distress and grief my soul has often found relief,
and oft escaped the tempter's snare by thy return, sweet hour of prayer.

"Sweet hour of prayer, sweet hour of prayer, thy wings shall my petition bear,
to him whose truth and faithfulness engage the waiting soul to bless;
and since he bids me seek his face, believe his word and trust his grace,
I'll cast on him my every care, and wait for thee, sweet hour of prayer."

"They who are hasty in their devotions and think a little will do, are strangers both to the nature of devotion and the nature of man; they do not know that they are to learn to pray, and that prayer is to be learnt as they learn other things, by frequency, constancy, and perseverance." William Law

"Prayer is not changing God's mind but finding God's mind." Anonymous

"God does not hear us because we pray earnestly—He hears us solely on the basis of redemption. God is never impressed by our earnestness. Prayer is not simply getting things from God—that is only the most elementary kind of prayer. Prayer is coming into perfect fellowship and oneness with God." Oswald Chambers

"Mark the grand characteristic of true prayer—"In the Holy Ghost." The seed of acceptable devotion must come from heaven's storehouse. Only the prayer which comes from God can go to God. We must shoot the Lord's arrows back to Him. That desire which He writes upon our heart will move His heart and bring down a blessing, but the desires of the flesh have no power with Him." Charles Spurgeon

"When you labor at prayer, from God's perspective there are always results. What an astonishment it will be to see, once the veil is finally lifted, all the souls that have been reaped by you, simply because you have been in the habit of taking your orders from Jesus Christ." Oswald Chambers

"Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know." (Jer. 33:3 NIV)

"You cannot perish praying; no one has ever done so. If you could perish praying, you would be a new wonder in the universe. A praying soul in hell is an utter impossibility. A man calling on God and rejected by God—the supposition is not to be endured! 'Whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.'" Charles Spurgeon

"What if God does not demand prayer as much as gives prayer? What if God wants prayer in order to satisfy us? What if prayer is a means of God nourishing, restoring, healing, converting us? Suppose prayer is primarily allowing ourselves to be loved, addressed and claimed by God. What if praying means opening ourselves to the gift of God's own self and presence? What if our part in prayer is primarily letting God be giver? Suppose prayer is not a duty but the opportunity to experience healing and transforming love?" Martin Smith

"When a man is born from above, the life of the Son of God is born in him, and he can either starve that life or nourish it. Prayer is the way the life of God is nourished. Our ordinary views of prayer are not found in the New Testament. We look upon prayer as a means of getting things for ourselves; the Bible's idea of prayer is that we may get to know God Himself." Oswald Chambers

"Understanding that God wants to impart spiritual strength and refreshment encourages me to feel that I don't have to come with a full agenda when I meet God. He has invited me—and so I respond by choosing to answer his request for fellowship. How good it is to view prayer as an opportunity to receive from the Lord and as a time to 'yield a sweet savour unto God'." Cynthia Heald

"How often have you come to God with your requests and gone away thinking, 'I've really received what I wanted this time!' And yet you go away with nothing, while all the time God has stood with His hands outstretched not only to take you but also for you to take Him. Just think of the invincible, unconquerable, and untiring patience of Jesus, who lovingly says, 'Come to Me . . . .'. Oswald Chambers

"The prayer which moves the arm of God is still a bruised and battered prayer, and only moves that arm because the sinless One, the great Mediator, has stepped in to take away the sin of our supplication." Charles Spurgeon

"People describe intercession by saying, 'It is putting yourself in someone else's place.' That is not true! Intercession is putting yourself in God's place; it is having His mind and His perspective." Oswald Chambers

"Let us therefore draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and may find grace to help in time of need." Heb. 4:16

"The throne of God is a throne set up on purpose for the dispensation of grace and from which every utterance is an utterance of grace. The scepter that is stretched out from it is the silver scepter of grace. The decrees proclaimed from it are purposes of grace. The gifts that are scattered down its golden steps are gifts of grace, and He who sits upon the throne is grace Himself. That it is the throne of grace that we approach when we pray is a mighty source of encouragement to all of us who are praying men and women."

"Praying in the Holy Ghost is praying in fervency. Cold prayers ask the Lord not to hear them. Those who do not plead with fervency, plead not at all. As well speak of lukewarm fire as of lukewarm prayer—it is essential that it be red hot. It is praying perseveringly. The true suppliant gathers force as he proceeds, and grows more fervent when God delays to answer. The longer the gate is closed, the more vehemently does he use the knocker, and the longer the angel lingers the more resolved is he that he will never let him go without the blessing. Beautiful in God's sight is tearful, agonizing, unconquerable importunity. It means praying humbly, for the Holy Spirit never puffs us up with pride. It is His office to convince of sin, and so to bow us down in contrition and brokenness of spirit. We shall never sing Gloria in Excelsis except we pray to God de profundis: out of the depths must we cry, or we shall never behold glory in the highest. It is loving prayer. Prayer should be perfumed with love, saturated with love—love to our fellow saints, and love to Christ. Moreover, it must be a prayer full of faith. A man prevails only as he believes. The Holy Spirit is the author of faith, and strengthens it, so that we pray believing God's promise. O that this blessed combination of excellent graces, priceless and sweet as the spices of the merchant, might be fragrant within us because the Holy Ghost is in our hearts! Most blessed Comforter, exert Thy mighty power within us, helping our infirmities in prayer." Charles Spurgeon

"To pray is to let Jesus come into our hearts. This teaches us, in the first place, that it is not our prayer which moves the Lord Jesus. It is Jesus who moves us to pray. He knocks. Thereby He makes known His desire to come in to us. Our prayers are always a result of Jesus' knocking at our hearts' door." O. Hallesby

"True prayer is an inventory of wants, a catalogue of necessities, a revelation of hidden poverty. While it is an application to divine wealth, it is a confession of human emptiness." Charles Spurgeon

"The Holy Spirit Himself prays prayers in us which we cannot utter ourselves. When we are born again of God and are indwelt by the Spirit of God, He expresses for us the unutterable. He, the Holy Spirit in you, 'makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God' (Rom. 8:27). And God searches our hearts, not to know what our conscious prayers are, but to find out what the prayer of the Holy Spirit is. He will be responsible for the unconscious part which we don't know, but we must pay careful attention to and guard the conscious part for which we are responsible." Oswald Chambers

"I have prayed for thee." Luke 22:32

"He pleads for us . . . 'I have prayed for you: I have done it already; I have gone to court and entered a counter plea even before an accusation is made.' O Jesus, what a comfort it is that thou hast pleaded our cause against our unseen enemies; countermined their mines, and unmasked their ambushes. Here is a matter for joy, gratitude, hope, and confidence." Charles Spurgeon

"This is a certain truth that nothing ever did or can have the least desire or tendency to ascend to heaven, but that which came down from heaven; and therefore nothing in the heart can pray, aspire, and long after God, but the Spirit of God moving and stirring in it." William Law

"Prayer is not a way of making use of God; prayer is a way of offering ourselves to God in order that He should be able to make use of us. It may be that one of our great faults in prayer is that we talk too much and listen too little. When prayer is at its highest we wait in silence for God's voice to us; we linger in His presence for His peace and His power to flow over us and around us; we lean back in His everlasting arms and feel the serenity of perfect security in Him." William Barclay

"What a sweet satisfaction it is to know that the Lord Jesus, in His office as our great Intercessor, is prevalently pleading for His people! O anxious gazer, look not so much at
the battle below, but lift thine eyes yonder where the Saviour lives and pleads, for while He intercedes, the cause of God is safe. Let us fight as if it all depended upon us, but let us look up and know that all depends upon Him." Charles Spurgeon

"The childish idea that prayer is a handle by which we can take hold of God and obtain whatever we desire, leads to easy disillusionment with both what we had thought to be God and what we had thought to be prayer." Robert L. Short

"God reveals in John 17 that His purpose is not just to answer our prayers, but that through prayer we might come to discern His mind." Oswald Chambers

"Help, Lord." Psalm 12:1

"It makes a great difference in our feelings towards others if their needs and their joys are on our lips in prayer; as also it makes a vast difference in their feelings towards us if they know that we are in the habit of praying for them. There is no chasm in society that cannot be firmly and permanently bridged by intercession; there is no feud or dislike that cannot be healed by the same exercise of love." Charles H. Brent

"Lord, take not thy Holy Spirit from us! Withdraw not from us Thine indwelling grace! Hast Thou not said, 'I the Lord do keep it; I will water it every moment: lest any hurt it, I will keep it night and day'? Lord, keep us everywhere. Keep us when in the valley, that we murmur not against Thy humbl- ing hand; keep us when on the mountain, that we wax not giddy through being lifted up; keep us in youth, when our passions are strong; keep us in old age, when becoming conceited of our wisdom, we may therefore prove greater fools than the young and giddy; keep us when we come to die, lest, at the very last, we should deny Thee! Keep us living, keep us dying, keep us labouring, keep us suffering, keep us fighting, keep us resting, keep us everywhere, for everywhere we need Thee, O our God!" Charles Spurgeon

"Prayer is not conquering God's reluctance, but taking hold of God's willingness." Phillips Brooks

"If you are swept off your feet, it is time to get on your knees." Frederick Beck

"If you lack knowledge, go to school. If you lack wisdom, get on your knees!" Vance Havner

"If the veil of the world's machinery were lifted off, how much we would find is done in answer to the prayers of God's children." Robert Murray M'Cheyne

"Prayer is a mighty instrument, not for getting man's will done in Heaven, but for getting God's will done in earth." Robert Law

"When I cry unto Thee, then shall mine enemies turn back: this I know; for God is for me." Psalm 56:9

"Prayer must and shall be heard, and never, even in the secrets of eternity, has the Lord said unto any living soul, 'Seek ye Me in vain.'" Charles Spurgeon

"If we would talk less and pray more about things, we should be better enabled to bear them." John Owen

"Prayer is the movement of trust, of gratitude, of adoration, or of sorrow, that places us before God, seeing both Him and ourselves in the light of His infinite truth, and moves us to ask Him for the mercy, the spiritual strength, the material help, that we all need. The man whose prayer is so pure that he never asks God for anything does not know who God is, and does not know who he is himself: for he does not know his own need of God. All true prayer somehow confesses our absolute dependence on the Lord of life and death. It is, therefore, a deep and vital contact with Him whom we know not only as Lord but as Father. It is when we pray truly that we really are. Our being is brought to a high perfection by this." Thomas Merton

"Prayer is ruin's remedy, doubt's destroyer, the cure of all cares, the antidote to all anxieties, the grand panacea for all pains, and the golden key that can open the gate of mercy!" Charles Spurgeon

"If we would talk less and pray more about them, things would be be better than they are in the world; at least, we should be better enabled to bear them." John Owen

"Prayer is not a way of making use of God; prayer is a way of offering ourselves to God in order that He should be able to make use of us. It may be that one of our great faults in prayer is that we talk too much and listen too little. When prayer is at its highest we wait in silence for God's voice to us; we linger in His presence for His peace and His power to flow over us and around us; we lean back in His everlasting arms and feel the serenity of perfect security in Him." William Barclay

"True, whole prayer is nothing but love." St. Augustine

"Make me what Thou wouldst have me be. I bargain for nothing. I make no terms. I seek for no previous information whither Thou art taking me. I will be what Thou wilt make me, and all that Thou wilt make me. I say not, I will follow Thee whithersoever Thou goest, for I am weak, but I give myself to Thee, to lead me anywhither." John Henry Newman

"Teach me. O God, to use all the circumstances of my life today that they may bring forth in me the fruits of holiness rather than the fruits of sin.

              Let me use disappointment as material for patience:
              Let me use success as material for thankfulness:
              Let me use suspense as material for perseverance:
              Let me use danger as material for courage:
              Let me use reproach as material for longsuffering:
              Let me use praise as material for humility:
              Let me use pleasures as material for temperance:
              Let me use pains as material for endurance."
                                                 John Baillie
"Prayer is ruin's remedy, doubt's destroyer, the cure of all cares, the antidote to all anxieties, the grand panacea for all pains, and the golden key that can open the gate of mercy!" Charles Spurgeon

"Prayer is the lifting of an eye, the falling of a tear, the outdarting of an arm as if it would snatch a blessing from on high. You do not need long sentences, intricate expressions, elaborate and innumerable phrases; a look may be a battle half won. You may pray now or in the crowded street or in the busiest scene—you can always have a word with God—you can always wing a whisper to the skies. Pray without ceasing. Live in the spirit of prayer. Let your life be one grand desire, Godward and heavenward. Then use as many words or as few as you please. Your heart is itself a prayer, and your look a holy expectation." Joseph Parker

"Prayer need not be upbeat and optimistic. The true believer does not always rise from his knees full of encouragement and fresh hope. There are times when one may remain down in the dumps and yet still have prayed well. For what God wants from us is not the observance of a religious protocol, but just that we be real with Him. What He wants is our heart." Mike Mason from The Gospel of Job

"Fishing is a good metaphor for prayer. The unpredictablity of the element, its tempestuousness at times, its windless calm at others. And its depth, its vastness—the feeling that we're just skimming surfaces—that the mystery and marvel folds down into unfathomable and often unreachable dark- ness. The thrill when something—anything—takes the line, and the disappointment and often the mess when its not what you had hoped for. And always waiting.

"Prayer and waiting are intrinsically linked, joined at the hip. Prayer makes no sense apart from waiting. Prayer is about being made in the likeness of Christ. Conformed, reformed, transformed. If prayer was only about getting things—getting even, getting rich, getting well, getting justice—then we would call it something else. We have lots of names to describe the quest and method for getting those things: magic, medicine, capitalism, lobbying.

"But prayer is not about bartering and bargaining with God, haggling for the best deal; a pound of piety for remission of sickness. Prayer, at its heart, is about becoming like the crucified and risen Christ. And that is a work like wind carving stone. It is slow, painful, toiling work, rarely swift or easy. It is riddled with wrenching setbacks, and its break- throughs are more serendipitous than calculated. There are disciplines for prayer, to be sure, but no mechanisms. Gimmicks and panaceas—like glittery gimcrack lures for fishermen—are widely available and equally useless. There is simply no substitute for becoming like Christ other than being with Christ, and especially with Him in solitude and suffering and sorrow. And so prayer, like fishing, is about waiting. Prayer is the poetry of waiting. It is the language of those who know that what is now is not what should be and not what will be, if we wait." Mark Buchanan, from Your God is Too Safe

Lord, make me an instrument of Your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
where there is sadness, joy.

O, Divine Master,
grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love;
For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
it is in dying that we are born again to eternal life.

St. Frances of Assissi

To read my teaching on prayer click here. Read this!
To read my talk on prayer click here.  Read this!

Encouragement for our Prayer Lives from Hebrew and Greek Words for Prayer
In addition to our more traditional understanding of prayer, all of the words in these word studies relate to prayer. In God's grace prayers do not have to be couched in any particular tone or form to be heard by God as prayer.

We find all dimensions of prayer to and fellowship with the Lord in these word studies—from simple thoughts and desires to intense warfare to deep and abiding worship. Look for the common threads of desiring, wishing, thinking, mourning, and worship in these word studies on prayer. When our thoughts are directed Godward, God hears them as prayer, even if we are not consciously praying. This is not in any way meant to discourage us from regular concentrated, intentional times of prayer. It is only to encourage us that we are praying more than we know.

The connection between seeking, asking, desiring, wishing, thinking and prayer:

to seek; to desire earnestly; to ask; to gush over; to treat or frequent (visit); to follow; to pursue; to search; to question; to require (need); to entreat; beseech; to sing a hymn; to bow; request; demand; beg; lay to charge; consult; desire; wish; lend; communion; meditation; thought; ponder; converse (with oneself); muse; reflect; contemplate; speak; talk; devotion; to lift to heaven; petition; bind; be in bonds; knit; tie; wind; interview; to light upon; to bring to pass; investigate; wish expressed as a petition to God; vow; will; approach [God]; draw near [to God] for favor; boast, glory, rejoice in prayer; to call near, implore, exhort, console, call for, comfort; come near; visit; agree to; draw near; go near; to stand; abide; appoint; continue; covenant; establish; to tread; to frequent.

The following words were found in the same word for warfare and prayer:

intercede; listen to prayer; to impinge (invade, strike, hit, come into conflict with, touch, exert influence, relate to, have a relation to, have to do with, tie in with, pertain to), by accident or violence or by importunity (insistence, emphasis, coaxing, entreaty, supplication, prayer, beseechment, imploration); make intercession, meet (together), reach, run, impact. to judge (officially or mentally).

To worship is to pray—to pray is to worship. The following words were found in the same word for worship and prayer:

to worship; to care for; to burn incense in worship; be a sweet fragrance; give honor; adoration; approach; come near; visit; agree to; pray; supplicate; intercede; listen to prayer; to tread or frequent (visit), follow (for pursuit or search); seek; ask; inquire; care for; question; require; prostrate; stretch; to use the hand; to hold out the hand; to revere; worship (with extended hands); to bemoan; confess; make confession; praise; thank; give thanks- giving; to search out; investigate; crave; demand; worship; enquire; require; to call near; invite; invoke; implore; exhort; console; beseech; call for; comfort; desire; intreat; pray; approach; come near; visit; agree to; draw near; pray; supplicate.

To mourn in the presence of God is to pray. The following words were found in the same word for mourning and prayer:

to be in travail; be grieved; to make or be in straits; to sigh; murmur; pray inaudibly; with grief; groan; grudge; sigh; to be rubbed or worn; to complain, to be disconsolate.

Ps. 55:2, "Attend unto me, and hear me; I mourn [SC 7300 - tramp about, i.e. ramble (free or disconsolate): have the dominion, be lord, mourn, rule] in my complaint [SC 7878 - to ponder, i.e. (by impl.) converse (with oneself and hence aloud) or trans. utter: commune, complain, declare, meditate, muse, pray, speak, talk (with)], and make a noise."

I Sam. l:9-l8, " . . . And Eli said unto her, How long wilt thou be drunken?; Put away thy wine from thee. And Hannah answered and said, No, my lord, I am a woman of a sorrowful spirit. I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink, but have poured out my soul before the Lord. Count not thine handmaid for a daughter of Belial; for out of the abundance of my complaint and grief have I spoken hitherto . . . "

David said he mourned in his complaint and God heard it as prayer. All of the psalms are prayers.

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