Prayer Fills Man's Poverty With God's Riches
By E. M. Bounds; The Complete Works of E.M Bounds on Prayer
Prayer is a solemn service due to God, an adoration, a worship, an approach to God for some request, the presenting of some desire, the expression of some need to him, who supplies all need, and who satisfies all desires; who, as a Father, finds his greatest pleasure in relieving the wants and granting the desires of his children.
Prayer is the child’s request, not to the winds nor to the world, but to the Father. Prayer is the outstretched arms of the child for the Father’s help. Prayer is the child’s cry calling to the Father’s ear, the Father’s heart, and to the Father’s ability, which the Father is to hear, the Father is to feel, and which the Father is to relieve. Prayer is the seeking of God’s great and greatest good, which will not come if we do not pray.
Prayer is no petty invention of man, a fancied relief for fancied ills. Prayer is no dreary performance, dead and death-dealing, but is God’s enabling act for man, living and life giving, joy and joy giving.
Prayer is the contact of a living soul with God. In prayer, God stoops to kiss man, to bless man, and to aid man in everything that God can devise or man can need. Prayer fills mans emptiness with God’s fullness. It fills man’s poverty with God’s riches. It puts away man’s weakness with God’s strength. It banishes man’s littleness with God’s greatness. Prayer is God’s plan to supply man’s great and continuous need with God’s great and continuous abundance.
It takes prayer to minister. It takes life, the highest form of life, to minister. Prayer is the highest intelligence, the profoundest wisdom, the most vital, the most joyous, the most efficacious, and the most powerful of all vocations. It is life, radiant, transporting, eternal life.
Away with dry forms, with dead, cold habits of prayer! Away with sterile routine, with senseless performances, and petty playthings of prayer. Let us work at it skillfully. Let us seek to be adept in this great work or praying. Let us be master-workmen, in the high art of praying.
Let us be so in the habit of prayer, so devoted to prayer, so filled with its rich spices, so ardent by its holy flame, that all heaven and earth will be perfumed by its aroma, and nations yet in the womb will be blessed by our prayers.
Heaven will be fuller and brighter in glorious inhabitants, earth will be better prepared for its bridal day, and hell robbed of many of its victims, because we have lived to pray.