PRAYER IS THE SECRET

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Mark 6:46 And when he had sent them away, he departed into a mountain to pray.

Luke 6:12 And it came to pass in those days, that he went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God.

Romans 8:26 Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.

1 Thessalonians 5:17 Pray without ceasing.

Philippians 4:6 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.

 

THE MOST HEALTHY STATE OF A CHRISTIAN

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“I am poor and needy — come quickly to me, O God! You are my help and my deliverer. O Lord, do not delay!” Psalm 70:5

The act of prayer teaches us our unworthiness — which is a very beneficial lesson for such proud beings as we are. If God gave us blessings without constraining us to pray for them — we would never know how poor we are. But a true prayer is . . .
an inventory of our needs,
a catalog of our necessities,
a revelation of our hidden poverty.

While prayer is an application to divine wealth — it is also a confession of human emptiness. The most healthy state of a Christian, is to be . . .
always empty in SELF and constantly depending upon the Lord for supplies;
always poor in SELF — and rich in Jesus;
as weak as water personally — but mighty through God to do great exploits.
And hence prayer, while it adores God, it lays the creature where it should be — in the very dust!

Prayer is in itself, apart from the answer which it brings, a great benefit to the Christian. As the runner gains strength for the race by daily exercise; so for the great race of life, we acquire energy by the hallowed labor of prayer. Prayer plumes the wings of God’s young eaglets — that they may learn to soar above the clouds! Prayer sends God’s warriors forth to combat — with their sinews braced and their muscles firm. An earnest pleader comes out of his closet, even as the sun arises from the chambers of the east — rejoicing like a strong man to run his race.

Prayer is that uplifted hand of Moses — which routs the Amalekites more than the sword of Joshua. Prayer . . .
girds human weakness with divine strength,
turns human folly into heavenly wisdom, and
gives the peace of God to troubled mortals.
We have no idea what prayer can do!

We thank you, great God, for the mercy-seat — a choice proof of Your marvelous loving-kindness. Help us to use it aright throughout this day!

— Charles Spurgeon

THE ARM OF GRACE IS VERY LONG

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“Let us learn never to despair of the salvation of anyone—as long as he lives. Fathers ought never to despair of prodigal sons. Mothers ought never to despair of self-willed, headstrong daughters. Husbands should never despair of wives, nor wives of husbands. There is nothing impossible with God. The arm of grace is very long, and can reach those who seem very far off. Let us pray on, and hope on, for others—however unlikely
their salvation may appear to be at present.

The Holy Spirit can change any heart!

The blood of Christ can cleanse away any sin!

We shall see many in heaven, whom we never expected to see there. Grimshaw, the famous pastor of Yorkshire, when he died, left his only son unconverted, careless, thoughtless, and indifferent to true religion. The day came when the young man’s heart was changed, and he walked in the steps of his holy father. And when he lay upon his deathbed, one of his last words was, “What will my old father say—when he sees me in heaven!”

“Surely the arm of the Lord is not too short to save!” Isaiah 59:1

— J. C. Ryle

INTERVIEW WITH LEONARD RAVENHILL

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Psalms 24:3-5 Who shall ascend into the hill of the LORD? or who shall stand in his holy place? He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully. He shall receive the blessing from the LORD, and righteousness from the God of his salvation.

 

A CROSS TO CARRY

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Matthew 26:39 And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.

“Prayer is the best practical remedy that we can use in time of trouble. We see that Christ Himself prayed, when His soul was sorrowful. All true Christians ought to do the same.

Trouble is a cup that all must drink in this world of sin. We are “born to trouble as the sparks fly upward.” We cannot avoid it. Of all creatures, none is so vulnerable as man.
Our bodies,
our minds,
our families,
our business,
our friends —
are all so many doors through which affliction will come in. The holiest saints can claim no exemption from it. Like their Master, they are often “men of sorrow.”

But what is the first thing to be done in time of trouble? We must pray. Like Job, we must fall down and worship. Like Hezekiah, we must spread our matters before the Lord.

The first one we must turn to for help, must be our God. We must tell all our sorrow to our Father in Heaven. We must believe confidently that nothing is too trivial or minute to be laid before Him, so long as we do it with entire submission to His will. It is the mark of faith to keep nothing back from our best Friend. The thorn in the flesh shall either be removed — or grace to endure it will be given to us.”

— J C Ryle

All the children of God have a cross to carry. They have trials, troubles, and afflictions to go through for the Gospel’s sake. They have . . .
trials from the world,
trials from the flesh,
trials from the devil.

They have trials from relations and friends — hard words, hard conduct, and hard judgment.

They have trials in the matter of character — slander, misrepresentation, mockery, suggestion of false motives — all these often rain thick upon them.

They have trials from their own hearts.

They have each generally their own thorn in the flesh, which is their worst foe.

This is the experience of the children of God. Some of them suffer more — and some less. Some of them suffer in one way — and some in another. God measures out their portions like a wise physician, and cannot err. But never, I believe, was there one child of God, who reached Heaven without a cross!”

— J C Ryle

Matthew 16:24 Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.

Philippians 4:6 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.

Psalms 55:22 Cast thy burden upon the LORD, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.

Job 5:7 Yet man is born unto trouble, as the sparks fly upward.

Isaiah 53:3 He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.

Psalms 86:7 In the day of my trouble I will call upon thee: for thou wilt answer me.

Psalms 142:2 I poured out my complaint before him; I shewed before him my trouble.

Hebrews 4:16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.