The Main Thing

Rejoice always, pray continually, (1 5:16-17 Thessalonians NIV)

Peter Lord, a retired Floridian Pastor, said on many occasions, “the main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing. The primary way that God does things on this earth is through prayer.

I worked with Youth With A Mission for seventeen years. One day in an intercessory prayer group in Kona, Hawaii, in the 1970s, one of the intercessors saw in her mind’s eye a ship coming around the north Kona coast. Another group member said I believe God wants to give YWAM an ocean vessel. They started praying in this vein, followed by many other prayer groups praying for a ship. Sometime afterward, we saw the MV Anastasis, YWAM’s first ship, come around the northern coast of Kona. That ship ministry spun off from YWAM and became Mercy Ships, promoted on TV today. All this happened because a small group of people listened to what God had to say and started to pray his will into existence.

Pastor Lord taught that the main thing was prayer as two-way communication—listening and speaking to God. Praying without listening to God is like shooting a gun without aiming. Hitting your target would be random. Even a blind squirrel occasionally happens upon a nut, but not very often. It seems to me that one reason we may not get an answer to our prayers is that we could be praying out of the will of God. If this is true, why not discern how to pray before we pray?  

Yes, prayer is how God gets things done on this earth, but he may have another reason—a relationship with him. Without two-way communication, you cannot build a relationship with a person or God. Let’s keep prayer as the main thing to get to know God and accomplish his purposes in the process.

The image is used with permission by Microsoft.

Ken Barnes is the author of “Broken Vessels,” published in February 2021, and “The Chicken Farm and Other Sacred Places”, published by YWAM Publishing in 2011.

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