You’ve heard it said, don’t reinvent the wheel. It’s good advice – some things are already done so well in their basic form, it is unnecessary and foolish to try and duplicate them. I suggest that there are some prayers worth repeating because they are perfect – just perfect – as they are.
What are these prayers and who do they come from? Let’s do a historical walk through a ‘Hall of Prayer’ to discover what is worth praying again.
PROPHET OF PRAYER – Samuel
Samuel is an example of prayer not because of the words he spoke, but because of his heart attitude toward prayer. Samuel is known as the prophet of prayer; he receives this name justly for the many times we find him praying for others as he saves Israel more than once by interceding for them with the Father.
POINT: Do those you love need help? Pray!
As for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord by failing to pray for you. And I will teach you the way that is good and right. 1 Samuel 12:23
KING of ISRAEL – Solomon
The third King of Israel ruled well when he relied on the Lord’s wisdom. When he sought direction elsewhere, he failed.
POINT: Do you need wisdom? Pray!
“You have shown great kindness to David my father and have made me king in his place. Now, Lord God, let your promise to my father David be confirmed, for you have made me king over a people who are as numerous as the dust of the earth. Give me wisdom and knowledge, that I may lead this people, for who is able to govern this great people of yours?” 2 Chronicles 1:8-10
FIRST CHRISTIAN MARTYR – Stephen
Accused of blasphemy against the temple and the law, Stephen was stoned to death in 36AD. What did he do with his dying breaths? He prayed, asking God for mercy against his enemies.
POINT: Do you need to forgive? Pray!
And they stoned Stephen as he was calling on God and saying, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” 60 Then he knelt down and cried out with a loud voice, “Lord, do not charge them with this sin.” And when he had said this, he then died. Acts 7:59-60
CHURCH FATHER – St Clement of Alexandria, 150–215 AD
A Christian theologian and teacher in the Egyptian city, Alexandria, Titus Flavius Clemens was a convert, coming out of Paganism. Having parents who were non-believers, Clement prayed for children and families, making much of the theology of the Trinity, especially God the Father and Jesus the Son.
POINT: Do you desire for your children to know Christ? Pray!
Be kind to Your little children, Lord; that is what we ask of You as their Tutor, You the Father, Israel’s guide; Son, yes, but Father as well. Grant that by doing what You told us to do, we may achieve a faithful likeness to the Image and, as far as is possible for us, may find in You a good God and a lenient Judge.
May we all live in the peace that comes from You. May we journey towards Your city, sailing through the waters of sin untouched by the waves, borne tranquilly along by the Holy Spirit, Your Wisdom beyond all telling. Night and day until the last day of all, may our praises give You thanks, our thanksgiving praise You: You who alone are both Father and Son, Son and Father, the Son who is our Tutor and our Teacher, together with the Holy Spirit.
MISSIONARY – Elisabeth Elliot (1926–2015)
A missionary in Ecuador to the Auca tribe, Elisabeth’s husband, Jim Elliot, was murdered in 1956 trying to make contact with this people group. After his death, Elisabeth spent 2 years as a missionary reaching out and serving the very people that killed her husband.
Point: Do you want to live a life fully submitted to Christ? Pray!
Loving Lord and heavenly Father, I offer up today all that I am, all that I have, all that I do, and all that I suffer, to be Yours today and Yours forever. Give me grace, Lord, to do all that I know of Your holy will. Purify my heart, sanctify my thinking, correct my desires. Teach me, in all of today’s work and trouble and joy, to respond with honest praise, simple trust, and instant obedience, that my life may be in truth a living sacrifice, by the power of Your Holy Spirit and in the name of Your Son Jesus Christ, my Master and my all. Amen.
Dear Reader, are you inspired by how others reach out and up to their God – how they depend upon Him and ask Him to work? Read these prayers and make them your own or use them as an encouragement to write your own. However you engage with these faithful followers of Christ and their prayers, may you never grow weary or complacent about the amazing grace we receive when we take time to pray.
Blessings to you from the God we seek! Elizabeth