How Important is Prayer
The following is taken from James Smith, “Sunny Subjects for All Seasons" (1858).
How important is a spirit of prayer! It is . . . the proof of regeneration, the manifestation of grace in our hearts, and the evidence our title to mansions in the skies! Prayer is . . . the breath of the renewed soul, the beating of the sanctified heart, the effect of the life of God within us. O that I had prayed more!
Prayer should become a habit with us — then everything would furnish us with matter for prayer. Prayer should mingle with our pleasures and our pains, with our labor and our rest. O for more prayer! We should never do — what we cannot pray God to bless. We should never go — where we cannot ask God to go with us.
If we would hold fast our profession, if we would adorn the gospel, if we would honor Jesus, if we would enjoy our mercies, if we would get good by our trials, if we would see all things working together for good, if we would conquer Satan, if we would overcome the world, if we would crucify the flesh with its affections and lusts — we must pray!
Prayer, if it is believing prayer . . . opens Heaven to us, unveils the glorious face of God, and brings down foretastes of the joys of paradise, makes us a match for all our foes, enables us patiently to carry every cross, and with perseverance to climb and pass over the loftiest hills we meet with on our heaven-bound pilgrimage!
Those who pray, will, by deriving strength from Heaven, by drawing down wisdom from above — withstand every storm, and shout God's praises at last.
Tempted Christian — pray, and you will overcome every temptation. Troubled Christian — pray, and God will deliver you out of every trouble. Perplexed Christian — pray, and God will make your way plain before your face. Doubting Christian — pray, and God will disperse your doubts, and chase your fears away. Trembling Christian — pray, and God will strengthen you with strength in the soul. Sick Christian — pray, and God will make all your bed in your affliction. Dying Christian — pray, and death will lose all its terrors, and you will gently fall asleep in Jesus. Lost sinner — pray, for God who heard the publican and justified him, will hear you and save you. O for the grace of prayer, that we may in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present our requests to God." Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful." Colossians 4:2