During Prophet Elijah’s time, the people have forgotten about the God of Israel who saved them from Egypt. They did evil things in the eyes of the Lord. They turned their back against their God who led them through the wilderness and to the promised land. King Ahab went to serve Baal, leading his people astray. Elijah prayed a bold prayer to stop the rain. He declared before King Ahab saying, “As surely as the Lord, the God of Israel, lives—the God I serve—there will be no dew or rain during the next few years until I give the word (1 Kings 17:1)!”
According to James we learned that Elijah was just an ordinary man like you and I (James 5:16-18). He is neither a Superman nor god. But God listened to his earnest prayer because he was indeed a righteous man before the Lord. The key here is not that Elijah knew exactly what God wanted it or knew God’s every move (after all he was just a man and not God). But it shows that he has an intimate relationship with God. He humbled himself on his knees before he would access God’s power. He knew God not just in the head, rather, it’s like Job who says, “my ears had heard of you but now my eyes have seen you (Job 42:5). This man truly “knew” God. He feared God and intentionally lived a righteousness life for Him. He was constantly dwelling in God’s presence and expect the Lord, His Savior, would protect, deliver and listen to him. He stood before the Lord and was fully aware of His power. He is jealous for the Lord because his wanted the people to give God the glory He deserved. He prayed daring prayers and face challenges boldly because he knew who His Almighty God was. God was pleased to work with and through Elijah. God listened and actively responded to Elijah’s prayer.
Our evil times today is no different from the days of Elijah. What made the prophet pray such bold and earnest prayer? What can we learn from him and how do we apply to our prayer for disciple-making movement?
- Ask God to help us to truly “know” Him, to know His power, His justice, His grace and His mercy, so that we won’t just hear about Him but to see Him with our heart.
- Ask the Holy Spirit to help us live disciplined and holy lives for His name’s sake so that there will be nothing between us and God. Let our relationship with the Lord be the most sweet, honest and intimate one.
- Pray for “jealousy” for His name’s sake. Pray that God would give us the zeal to see His name being honored and His glory manifested in the Bay Area, in California and beyond. Let all hearts repent and turn to Him. Because He deserves the absolute glory of all!
- Pray that we would be aware of God’s presence as we minister. Expect our Lord to listen, to act, to deliver, to heal and to bind in His name. If He is with us, who could be against us?
- Pray for boldness and daring faith. Let us take heart because we are serving the same God who called Elijah into ministry. The same God who called Moses, Elijah and David is also calling us to go!
- Pray that God would give us boldness and tremendous faith in Him to pray daring prayers particularly in our ministry context. We dare to ask not because we are self-seeking or prideful. We ask because we know where we stand and who we represent.
- Pray for absolute, radical immediate, costly obedience in us just as we see it in Elijah, because a servant must obey the master by definition. If the servant choose to disobey, he or she is not longer a servant.