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Limitless Promise

by an unknown Christian

Early one morning when I was a student at a Christian college, a fellow student burst into my room holding an open Bible. His face glowed with mingled joy and surprise. “Do you believe this?” he practically shouted. “Is it really true?”

“Believe what?” My friend was still a young convert to Christ. The Bible was a new book to him, and as a result he often made a discovery.

“This!” He pointed to Matthew 21:21, 22. “  ‘If ye have faith, and doubt not, . . . all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.’  ” He closed the Bible with a snap. “Do you believe it? Is it true?”

“Yes, of course.” I marveled at his excitement. “Of course it’s true—of course I believe it.” But even as I spoke, doubts flashed through my mind.

“Well, that’s a very wonderful promise,” he said. “It seems absolutely limitless! Why don’t we pray more?”

As the door closed behind my eager friend, I imagined what it would be like to read the Bible for the first time. What an amazing book it would seem! How I would marvel over its incredible promises—especially those about prayer!

Now, as I thought of the verses my friend had shared with me, I felt God speaking to me in an extraordinary way. Jesus had given me a limitless promise in Matthew 21. Then why had I claimed so little from Christ?

In Bible times, God “wondered that there was no intercessor” (Isaiah 59:16). How much He must wonder today! Every one of us would say that we believe in prayer, yet how many of us truly believe in the power of prayer?

I’m afraid to say the answer: Not many of us do truly believe. If we did, we would experience more power. This brings me to some uncomfortable questions—and the same sad answer:

Why are we so often defeated by the devil? Because we pray so little.

Why do we become discouraged and disheartened? Because we pray so little.

Why do we bring so few souls into God’s marvelous light? Because we pray so little.

Why aren’t our churches on fire for God? Because we pray so little.

In fact, the secret of all our failure is our failure in secret prayer.

It doesn’t have to be that way. Instead, we can heed the call to prayer—and experience the amazing results. For we are never so high as when we are on our knees.

From The Kneeling Christian, by an unknown Christian. Printed in Young Disciple magazine, Volume 23, Number 27.

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