ローマ 15:30 兄弟たち。私たちの主イエス・キリストによって、また、御霊の愛によって切に願いします。私のた めに、私とともに力を尽くして神に祈ってください。

Probably countless missionaries use this verse in their “prayer letters,” because the thought and the need are no less true and urgent today than they were for Paul. The only reason we sometimes see this as trite is that we don't really understand or believe the power of prayer. It's interesting that where the Japanese, which I have come to trust as being close to the Greek, says “use all your strength in prayer,” the NIV says “join me in my struggle by praying.” It is true that prayer for someone is participation in their labors, but it is also true that we should not be halfhearted in our praying, and that is all too often the case. We tend to say a little prayer, if we pray at all, and then forget about it. That certainly isn't using all our strength! Everyone has struggles, and some are more intense than others, but prayer is a way in which we can genuinely come alongside brothers and sisters in Christ to support them. I well remember the tag line of a program that was on AFRTS (US military) Far East Network radio when I was a child. It said, “More things are wrought by prayer than this world dreams of.” I thought it was true at the time, and I still believe it!


As a missionary pastor I am certainly on both sides of this matter. I pray for the people in the church, both believers and “seekers,” I pray for those outside the church who haven't yet come to the place of being “seekers,” and I pray for brothers and sisters around the globe as I learn of their needs in one way or another. At the same time, I am very much in need of prayer myself. I am faced with pressures, distractions, and temptations, and my own strength is insufficient for the task. I well remember the period of close to 10 years, starting after we had been in Omura for a few years, when we lost the prayer support we began our ministry with because of the dissolution of a church. We were here and going through the motions, but our focus was dissipated and our effectiveness was quite low. That situation didn't correct until the Lord opened the way for us to make real connection with the members of a home fellowship, and they took us on as a prayer concern. Prayer makes a massive difference!


Father, thank You for the incredible privilege of prayer. It is indeed participating in what You are doing. Help me not only exercise it more and more fully, but also lead the believers to do likewise. Thank You for those who attend regular prayer meeting. That meeting has come under attack recently, which is hardly surprising since it does major damage to the work of the enemy! I ask Your protection for each member, and I pray that their number may increase. Show me how to teach prayer, both to those who join me in it (not difficult) and to those who don't (much more difficult). And I do ask for intercessors around the world, to lift up this church and the work here, so that Your plans and purposes may be fulfilled on Your schedule for Your glory. Thank You. Hallelujah!


0 件のコメント: