Do you know how powerful your prayers are? Prayers are powered by the Spirit of God, and nothing can limit the power of the Spirit of God. It doesn’t matter if you’re praying for something big or small, or who you’re praying for or where they are. Your prayers find whomever you pray for, wherever they are. God doesn’t even have to have the address; He already knows it.
We really should pray more for others, because there are so many people we could help through our prayers. Whenever we think about someone or some needy situation, we should send out a prayer.
A thought is not a prayer. A thought is only the beginning of a prayer. A thought is like an employee who’s standing there waiting for an order: If he’s just left standing there waiting, he’ll never get anything done. Just thinking about a person in need is not going to do it. We have to send the messenger. We have to pray the thought. We have to put feet to that thought by sending it in the form of a prayer. Jesus said, “Whatever you ask the Father in My name He will give you” (John 16:23). When we pray in Jesus’ name, it runs like a messenger. That’s the difference between a thought and a prayer.
So much depends on our prayers, because although God can do anything, He has committed Himself to work largely through us. When you think about someone you love or feel sorry for or know needs help, it is God who has put that thought in your mind. It’s like a telephone call: God initiates the call and sends it from His Spirit to your mind. You’re like the operator at the telephone exchange. God gives you the number He wants you to put through, and it’s up to you to make the connection—to send the call on to the party who needs to receive it. When God makes a call, He “plugs” a thought into your mind. He makes you think about that person, but then you have to plug in the patch cord that makes the connection and sends it on its way to that person. You are the link between God and the person He’s trying to reach, and it’s your prayers that make the connection.
You can’t just say, “Oh, that poor person, I feel so sorry for them.” If you just feel sorry for the person instead of making the connection between God and the person through prayer, it’s like you’re telling God that it’s no use, that there’s nothing you or He can do about it. That’s what happens when people don’t understand or believe in the power of prayer. If you believe, then you will send that prayer; you will forward the call. You, as the operator, have to believe that the message comes from God, and then you have to believe that your prayer can make the connection and get the message through to the other party. Faith flips the switch or plugs the cord into the jack, and puts God’s message through to the recipient.
God is the One who’s calling, but He tries to put the call through you because He wants to show you what real love is. Love is making a connection between God and somebody who needs His and your love. You are the connection between God and that person, in love. You have very little power in yourself, but if you are willing to make the connection, you can reach whomever He’s trying to reach with His love. Isn’t that beautiful?
In order to be able to make the connection, you’ve first of all got to be plugged into the power source, God. Second, you’ve got to make the connection. The power may be there, but you have to operate it. The power can’t flow through if you don’t flip the switch to make the connection. If you’re lazy or slow or negligent with these calls so you don’t make the connection, then the people God wants to reach will never get the message and they’ll never receive the love.
So much depends on prayer, and so much depends on us. There are a lot of people who need to and want to receive, but all too often we fail to make the connection. We don’t flip the switch, or we don’t plug in the cord to complete the call. We have the switch right there in our mind, and all we have to do is flip it. God can call and call, but some people won’t get the messages God has for them because of operators who either don’t hear God calling, or who are not concerned enough to plug in the cord or flip the switch that makes the connection that sends it on to those God’s trying to reach.
Of course, there are all kinds of reasons why operators sometimes can’t get through: bad connections, too much traffic on the line, static on the line, or something wrong on the other end. You may not always be able to get the message through, but you have to try. You are responsible to pray. Then if there’s something wrong out there, it’s not your fault. Even the best of operators can’t always get through. They may try and try and try and still not get through, but at least they’ve done their part—and that’s how your faith should be.
The instant you pray for someone, the message is on its way. The call has already passed through the telephone exchange; it’s on the line, and you are ringing that person’s bell. Then the other party has to answer the phone, of course. He or she has to receive the call. But some people either don’t hear the phone ringing or don’t pick up the receiver, so they never get the message. You can’t make the other party pick up the phone. All you can do is try to put the call through. After the message is on the line, then it’s the other person’s responsibility.
People could get all the answers they need and have all of their problems solved if they would just pick up the telephone and listen and receive God’s message, but some people don’t even want to hear. And there are other people who pick up the phone and listen a little bit, but they’re not really interested in the message or don’t think it’s important, so they hang up. How sad!
Prayer is just that simple! When God puts a thought in your mind about someone, that’s a message from God. He’s putting in a phone call to that person, and He wants you to be the operator to try to put that call through, by prayer.
We could accomplish so much through prayer! We can pray for a poor little girl, or a homeless person, or a world leader, or a nation or anything. We can pray, and set God’s power in motion! God’s Word says, “The king’s heart is in the hand of the Lord, like the rivers of water; He turns it wherever He wishes” (Proverbs 21:1), and, “Concerning the work of My hands, you command Me” (Isaiah 45:11). Our prayers can do mighty things and change the course of history!
The world will never know how much has not been accomplished because people didn’t pray—so please pray! You’re the operator. It’s your responsibility to pass on the message. Please don’t fail, or someone might miss God’s important call. Be a faithful operator.—Pray!