Biola Broadcaster - 1963-09

Prayer (continued) favorably we impress one another with our high-sounding words and phrases. I have to ask myself again and again, “Do I really believe the promises of God? “What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them” (Mark 11:24). Do I really believe Jeremiah 33:3, “Call unto me, and I will an­ swer thee, and show thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.” Do I really believe, John 14:13, 14, “And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Fa­ ther may be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I HE MAKETH NO MISTAKE M y Father's way may twist and turn. M y heart may throb and ache; But in my soul I'm glad to know He maketh no mistake. M y cherished plans may go astray. M y hopes may fade away; But still I'll trust my Lord to lead. For He doth know the way. Tho' night be dark and it may seem That day will never break. I'll pin my faith, my all, in Him; He maketh ho mistake. There's so much now I cannot see, M y eyesight's far too dim; But come what may, I'll simply trust And leave it all to Him. For by and by the mist will lift And plain it all He'll make, Through all the way, tho' dark to me, He made not one mistake. will do it.” Because Manoah believed God he enjoyed the blessings that re­ sulted from faith. This is what Jesus meaiit when He said, “Ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full” (John 16:24). Several other things interest m? about Manoah’s prayer. First' of all, it was brief. I do not know where the idea developed that everytime we go to the Lord in prayer we must spend a certain amount of time. There is no particular virtue in long prayers, ut­ tered only for the sake of longevity. To be surd, there are times when we

will spend many moments on our knees- in prayer. But the length of our pray­ ing ought to be dictated by the matters for which we are praying, the leading of the Holy Spirit, and the condition of our hearts. Formal praying is not the only way to communicate with God. Dawson Trotman, the founder of the Navigators, a man who profoundly in­ fluenced my own life for Christ, used to say, “Long prayers in public, mean short prayers in private.” When it comes to public prayer meetings it is many times a matter of consideration to be brief in our petitions and thanks­ giving. Then we notice that it was direct. There were no lengthy, involved sen­ tences, carefully framed to display great dexterity with words. Manoah had something on his heart. The third thing that impresses me is that it was specific. We need to be definite about our needs, our desires, our sins, and our thanksgivings. This is the pattern in most of the prayers recorded in the Word of God. It is very poignantly illustrated by Peter’s brief utterance when he attempted to walk to Jesus on the water. You remember how he found himself sinking into the stormy Sea of Galilee. He specific­ ally cried out, “Lord save me!” The an­ swer was equally direct and specific as Jesus reached out His strong arm and took him by the hand. Finally, notice that Manoah’s prayer was answered. “And God hearkened to the voice of Manoah; and the angel of God came again unto the woman as she sat in the field.” In a very won­ derful fashion, God gloriously and miraculously answered Manoah’s pray­ er. This is the same manner in which He answers your prayers. Let me encourage you when you come to the Lord in prayer to come in humility, simplicity, with a teachable spirit, an obedient will, and with ear­ nest faith. Accept these suggestions as embodied in Manoah’s prayer to be brief, direct, and specific in your pray­ ing so that you might make every moment count for time and for all eternity.

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