- It is prayer that activates the fulfilment of God’s promises:
Reading 1 Kings chapter 18, we see the necessity and intensity of prayer that brings about outstanding miracles and solutions. I use the word ‘necessity’ because:
- Although God had promised rain in 1 Kings 18:1 that He would send rain, Elijah still needed to pray before the fire fell and before the rain came.
- Although the Prophet Jeremiah had foretold that Israel was only going to be in exile for 70 years (Daniel 9:1-2), Daniel still needed to pray to God to activate the freedom (Daniel 9:3-19)
- Although God had promised through the Prophet Joel that He would pour out His Spirit upon all flesh (Joel 2:28-29), yet Jesus instructed His disciples to go and pray before they could be endued with this Spirit and Power (Acts 1:1-8)
I therefore, do not want you to stay with the misconception that since God has said He would do something, you no longer need to pray to bring it to pass.
2. For some things to happen, prayers require different types of intensity:
We see that the miracles performed in 1 Kings 18 by the Prophet Elijah required different types of intensity:
- In the miracle that brought down fire from heaven, the type of prayers employed seemed like one of a simple request from the Lord, asking for the fire of God to fall upon the wet and soaked altar of sacrifice. He just asked the Lord to send down fire as a proof that He is the God of Israel and that He’s the one who sent him on that errand as his servant (1 Kgs. 18:36-39).
For this miracle to have happened almost effortlessly, I believe that Elijah must have been a person who was always prayed-up: someone always in the presence of God, to a point that he had so much power not only to call down fire as if it was an easy thing to do, but also the power and special strength to physically outrun a horse when the rain almost began (1 Kgs. 18:46).
- What is our prayer life like?
- Have we prayed-up, or we are not praying?
- Do we really give ourselves to praying or are we only wishing?
Let us learn from this scenario that a prayerless person cannot have the confidence or boldness needed to put the devil and his prophets to shame in one’s life, family or surroundings. Because Elijah was a praying person, he was bold enough to display the power of God in the presence of people.
Also, make sure that you are praying to the God Almighty, who created the heavens and the earth. He alone is the One who brings down fire and puts the devil and his cohorts to shame. Do not pray to gods of this earth who neither see nor hear. They are creations and cannot answer you. Notice that the prophets of Baal prayed to Baal, but there was no voice or fire. Their prayers only brought them shame. May we not be put to shame in Jesus’ name.
- Right next to that first miracle, Elijah again prayed that God would work the miracle of sending rain but the manner of this second prayer is different from the previous: it required the prophet to bow down and put his head between his knees and continue praying (1 Kgs. 18:42).
We see that this type of prayer required so much intensity and inconvenience.
- Are we prepared to inconvenient ourselves in order to receive certain miracles desired, even though God may have already promised it – as we see in verse 2?
- Are we going to remain the people who always go to eat and drink – like Ahab, or we will go up to the mountain of the Lord to seek His face- like Elijah? (1 Kgs. 18:41-42)
- Do we have any prayer-altar, mountain, secluded place to which we go for serious needs?
Notice that some prayers require staying there in the presence of God until answer comes (1 Kgs. 18:41-44). Elijah kept sending his servant to go outside and see if there is any sign of rain. Brethren, are we prepared to stay any extra time in prayers or do we think the fast (fast-food restaurant-like) type of prayers will bring down the hands of God in certain situations?
Brethren, in the first instance of prayer, faith is required; and
- it is in alignment with the word of the Lord which says ask and it shall be given unto you (Matt. 7:7).
- Further, it aligns with the word of the Lord that says if you can believe you will tell this mountain to move and it shall move (Mark 11:22-23).
The second miracle required faith plus persistence:
- This aligns with the word of the Lord which says, you should persist “until your joy is full” (John 16:23-24).
- It aligns with the word of the Lord which says, “pray without ceasing” (1 Thess. 5:17).
- It aligns with the word of the Lord which says, “these things cannot be done but with fasting and prayer” (Matt. 17:21)
- It aligns with the word of the Lord which says, “if you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes” (Mark 9:23).
Sometimes, you are the only one doing the prayer because it is hard:
I realize that at times you are not able to get too many people praying alongside with you when it comes to some uneasy and persistent prayers; Elijah was the only one praying this serious prayer, but don’t worry just carry your faith along with you into your prayer room; the Lord can do great and mighty things through your prayer alone – for individuals, families and nations. I pray that the good Lord will inspire you and me to enter into the realm of prayers that bring miracles. Faith will be needed; time will be needed and persistence will be needed. Go ahead now and begin to pray for the power that prays through in Jesus name.