This post was taken almost completely (with the exception of two or three extended verses and a few changed sentences) from a lesson provided by Mark Ramsey. Therefore, if a Bible passage seems too long or a sentence does not make sense, blame it on me.
Pray without ceasing
In the midst of this crisis, I have prayed that people who do not know the Lord may approach Him through prayer and supplication. Maybe they might find a Bible in their home and begin to read it. Possibly someone might join a friend in an online Bible study. Through prayer, may it be that this unprecedented may draw people closer to the Lord than ever before. Of cours, Satan is hard at work to prevent that from happening. This is evident in the main stream media — which
- Emphasizes that it is the Christian gatherings which have helped spread the virus
- And convinced the President to delay the proper procedures to protect the public.
Clearly, there is disdain by the media for Christians. Just witness the attacks on Mike Lindell of My Pillow, who is converting his factories to make masks, but had the audacity to encourage the public to read the Bible and pray. None of this is surprising to us, though.
We do know an interesting fact — the vast majority of people in pain and fear all do one thing: pray! Even people who don’t typically pray will pray during crisis.
As a Christ follower, this principle is a no-brainer. But, the Bible teaches by precept and practice two broad types of prayer:
- Quiet time prayer (which refers to daily devotional time set aside to worship and fellowship with the Lord through prayer and scripture reading — emphasizing an intimacy with the Lord)
- Crisis time prayer (in which you are seeking help from the Lord).
Quiet Time Prayer
This is a good point to pause before we look at the crisis time prayer.
How is your quiet time prayer life? Is it consistent, difficult, or nonexistent?
Do you think it is important to continue consistent quiet time prayer in the midst of our crisis? Why?
Crisis Time Prayer
Now, how about your crisis time prayer: What is the content of your crisis time prayer?
Over and over again, the Bible calls us to pray. Prayer keeps us focused, centered, with our hearts tuned into the One Who can truly help us. Prayers in the closet, on the rooftop, alone, with others, out loud, quietly, short, long, weeping, laughing — this is God’s way of communicating to us. Too often, we try to figure out things on our own and then we seek God’s blessing on our choice/decision. Our job is to get on our knees, seek His face, and let Him guide our steps.
Saturate your mind with these scripture verses:
Rejoice always; pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 NASB)
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6-7 NASB)
Is anyone among you suffering? Then he must pray. Is anyone cheerful? He is to sing praises. (James 5:13 NASB)
For the eyes of the Lord are toward the righteous, And H is ears attend to their prayer, But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil .” (1 Peter 3:12 NASB)
Now examine these crisis time prayers:
Then Hannah rose after eating and drinking in Shiloh. Now Eli the priest was sitting on the seat by the doorpost of the temple of the Lord . She, greatly distressed, prayed to the Lord and wept bitterly. She made a vow and said, “O Lord of hosts, if You will indeed look on the affliction of Your maidservant and remember me, and not forget Your maidservant, but will give Your maidservant a son, then I will give him to the Lord all the days of his life, and a razor shall never come on his head.” Now it came about, as she continued praying before the Lord , that Eli was watching her mouth. As for Hannah, she was speaking in her heart, only her lips were moving, but her voice was not heard. So Eli thought she was drunk. Then Eli said to her, “How long will you make yourself drunk? Put away your wine from you.” But Hannah replied, “No, my Lord, I am a woman oppressed in spirit; I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink, but I have poured out my soul before the Lord . Do not consider your maidservant as a worthless woman, for I have spoken until now out of my great concern and provocation.” Then Eli answered and said, “Go in peace; and may the God of Israel grant your petition that you have asked of Him.” She said, “Let your maidservant find favor in your sight.” So the woman went her way and ate, and her face was no longer sad. Then they arose early in the morning and worshiped before the Lord , and returned again to their house in Ramah. And Elkanah had relations with Hannah his wife, and the Lord remembered her. It came about in due time, after Hannah had conceived, that she gave birth to a son; and she named him Samuel, saying, “Because I have asked him of the Lord .” (1 Samuel 1:9-20 NASB)
Then Jonah prayed to the Lord his God from the stomach of the fish, and he said, “I called out of my distress to the Lord , And He answered me. I cried for help from the depth of Sheol; You heard my voice. For You had cast me into the deep, Into the heart of the seas, And the current engulfed me. All Your breakers and billows passed over me. So I said, ‘I have been expelled from Your sight. Nevertheless I will look again toward Your holy temple.’ Water encompassed me to the point of death. The great deep engulfed me, Weeds were wrapped around my head. I descended to the roots of the mountains. The earth with its bars was around me forever, But You have brought up my life from the pit, O Lord my God. While I was fainting away, I remembered the Lord , And my prayer came to You, Into Your holy temple. Those who regard vain idols Forsake their faithfulness, But I will sacrifice to You With the voice of thanksgiving. That which I have vowed I will pay. Salvation is from the Lord .” Then the Lord commanded the fish, and it vomited Jonah up onto the dry land. (Jonah 2:1-10 NASB)
They wandered in the wilderness in a desert region; They did not find a way to an inhabited city. They were hungry and thirsty; Their soul fainted within them. Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble; He delivered them out of their distresses. He led them also by a straight way, To go to an inhabited city. Let them give thanks to the Lord for His lovingkindness, And for His wonders to the sons of men! (Psalms 107:4-8 NASB)
Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble, And He brought them out of their distresses. He caused the storm to be still, So that the waves of the sea were hushed. (Psalms 107:28-29 NASB)
When He got into the boat, His disciples followed Him. And behold, there arose a great storm on the sea, so that the boat was being covered with the waves; but Jesus Himself was asleep. And they came to Him and woke Him, saying, “Save us, Lord; we are perishing!” He *said to them, “Why are you afraid, you men of little faith?” Then He got up and rebuked the winds and the sea, and it became perfectly calm. The men were amazed, and said, “What kind of a man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey Him?” (Matthew 8:23-27 NASB)
One of the synagogue officials named Jairus *came up, and on seeing Him, *fell at His feet and *implored Him earnestly, saying, “My little daughter is at the point of death; please come and lay Your hands on her, so that she will get well and live.” (Mark 5:22-23 NASB)
As Pharaoh drew near, the sons of Israel looked, and behold, the Egyptians were marching after them, and they became very frightened; so the sons of Israel cried out to the Lord. (Exodus 14:10 NASB)
And He said, “Come!” And Peter got out of the boat, and walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But seeing the wind, he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, “Lord, save me!” (Matthew 14:29-30 NASB)
The common theme in these requests is distress. We come to a point where there is very little we can do except plead to God.
Cameron Thompson authored the book, Master Secrets of Prayer, and he wrote this:
There comes a time, in spite of our soft, modern ways, when we must be desperate in our prayers, when we must wrestle, when we must be outspoken, shameless and importuneate (persistent). Many of the prayers in scripture are “cries” and the Hebrew and Greek words are very strong. Despite opinions to the contrary, the Bible recognizes such a thing as storming heaven – “praying through.” The fervent prayer of a righteous man is might in its working.
This time is such a time for this crisis prayer – yes, quiet time prayers , but also crisis time prayers. This time is urgent and we must cry out to the Lord earnestly, humble ourselves under God’s mighty hand that He may lift us up and cast our anxieties on Him because He cares for us.
Won’t you join me as we cry out to the Lord in our distress and ask for His intervention that He may be glorified?