What do people think of us? What is our reputation as a church? These are questions we may never know the answer to (and we may not want to!). However, we know what the reputation of the early church was; the apostle Paul writes in Acts 2:42-47 that the church was devoted to the apostle’s teaching, to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread….and to prayer. These things were the fundamental components and characteristics of the early church, and because of that, the church enjoyed the favour of all the people……and the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.
We long to see those days again. Perhaps we need to return to this simple model of church.
Prayer has been referred to as the engine room of the church, indeed it is, and yet our prayer meetings are poorly attended. Often the prayer meeting is a burden. There is a lack of expectation that God will act. There is disengagement with the church and its fellowship.
If we agree with C.H. Spurgeon that prayer is the ‘slender nerve that moves the muscles of omnipotence’, why is it so often viewed as our last resource, rather than our first response? Prayer can often be the most neglected aspect of our Christian walk so I am thankful that the National Day of Prayer gives us an opportunity, as individuals, congregations, and as a denomination, to put prayer to the fore in the knowledge that we serve the Lord of heaven and of earth, the one who delights to hear his people pray. It is good for us as a church to reaffirm the importance of prayer in the life of the church and its people. It is biblical. It is necessary. It is worthwhile.
Perhaps we can re-ignite the fervour of the church, and possibly even our own hearts, as we come together before the throne of grace, in prayer. I look forward to being together with the Lord’s people on November 30th as we look to Him who is able to do even more than we can ask or imagine. To God be the Glory.