Effective, fervent prayer

(An excerpt from The Epistle of James, by Brother Neville Smart, page 196)

How slowly does the human mind come to an appreciation of what the scriptures mean by prayer! It is all summed up in the phrase which Jesus taught us, “Thy will be done”; but the significance of that utterance is as profound as its terms are simple.
What vitiates so many of our prayers and renders them ineffective is that we so often ask with a greater or lesser degree of self-interest: the futility of the doubleminded approach to God (whether it be the wickedness of duplicity or the weakness of doubt and half-faith) has been several times emphasized by James. The only basis for finally effective prayer is absolute submission and absolute trust – an absolute surrender of the human personality to the will of the divine Lord of all.

And this, in the end, is what is involved in true faith: if we really believe, if from our hearts we really desire to see the will of God fulfilled in all creation, we shall not at last want anything for ourselves or for others which God does not want for us, or for them. Only once in human history has such complete submission been consistently achieved:

“Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me) to do thy will, O God”; “Not my will, but thine, be done”.

For the rest of us such a perfect merging of the individual will in the divine is at best an intermittent and fleeting experience; but some have reached through from time to time to an unreserved if but temporary surrender, and can speak of the bitter pangs through which it is born. To prayer of this character there is no denial, as John writes:

“This is the confidence we have in him, that, if we ask anything according to his will, he heareth us: and if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him” (1 John 5:14,15, KJV).

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Preceding

Redemption # 1Biblical doctrine of salvation

Posture in Prayer

Our prayer and a listening Father

Prayers for Rulers

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Additional reading

  1. As always God has a Plan
  2. How can you grow faith throughout your whole life?
  3. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #16 Benefits of praying
  4. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #17 Sorts of prayers
  5. Prayer not a withdrawal from the battles of life
  6. 3 Ways Prayer Connects Us to God
  7. Get into the habit of dealing with God about everything
  8. Thought for today October 31st: Daniel 9 – Inspiration to pray
  9. Pray that we will make the time to listen: listen to God and listen to each other
  10. How should we worship God? #12 Renewing the Mind
  11. Natural inclinations and Praying and asking
  12. Prayer not a withdrawal from the battles of life
  13. How should we worship God? #14 True worship
  14. Today’s thought “A house of prayer” (March 27)
  15. Memorizing wonderfully 69: Ephesians 6:14-18 Prayer and Supplication for all Saints
  16. Praying and acts of meditation without ceasing
  17. Praying is surrendering in all circumstances
  18. Be sound in mind and be vigilant with a view to prayers
  19. Be vigilant with a view to prayers
  20. Matthew 6:1-34 – The Nazarene’s Commentary on Leviticus 19:18 Continued 2 Prayer and neighbour love
  21. Always rejoicing Praying constantly Giving thanks for everything
  22. Praise Jehovah

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Over Christadelphians

Free Christadelphians or Brothers and sisters in Christ, living in Belgium, European Union. - Vrijë Christadelphians of Broeders en zusters in Christus wonende in België in de Europese Unie.
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