Links Daily Devotional

The Value of Prayer

Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed. (Mark 1:35, NIV)

A College Golf Fellowship session with Zach Johnson and Lee Janzen produced this question: “What do you pray for regarding your golf game?” Zach Johnson’s short answer spoke volumes. He stated, “I have always prayed that God would help me to learn something every day on the golf course.”

In Webb Simpson’s interview after winning the U.S. Open this year, he stated that he prayed harder than he ever had over the last few holes.

With current political campaigning in the air, the voices of former American presidents speak volumes to our great heritage of prayer and Christianity. Abraham Lincoln stated, “I have been driven many time to my knees by the overwhelming conviction that I had nowhere else to go. My own wisdom, and that of all about me, seemed insufficient for the day.”

Franklin D. Roosevelt broadcast a five-minute prayer over his fireside chat after Rome fell in World War II. You can hear it here.

Ronald Reagan repeatedly stated, “When we open ourselves to him, we gain not only moral courage but also intellectual strength.” Reagan was once asked if he was a born again Christian. His response: “I didn’t know there was any other kind.”

Finally, the prayers of George Washington are well-documented in William J. Johnson’s book, George Washington, The Christian, written in 1919. Washington prayed lengthy prayers in the morning and evening. This is an excerpt from one of his morning prayers:

 

Increase my faith in the sweet promises of the Gospel. Give me repentance from dead works. Pardon my wanderings, and direct my thoughts unto thyself, the God of my salvation. Teach me how to live in thy fear, labor in thy service, and ever to run in the ways of thy commandments. Make me always watchful over my heart, that neither the terrors of conscience, the loathing of holy duties, the love of sin, nor an unwillingness to depart this life, may cast me into a spiritual slumber. But daily frame me more and more into the likeness of thy son Jesus Christ, that living in thy fear, and dying in thy favor, I may in thy appointed time attain the resurrection of the just unto eternal life. Bless my family, friends and kindred unite us all in praising and glorifying thee in all our works begun, continued, and ended, when we shall come to make our last account before thee blessed Savior, who hath taught us thus to pray, our Father.

Prayer is a sign of ultimate reliance upon God. Prayer pleases God (Proverbs 15:8), helps us (Hebrews 4:14-16), and God answers prayer (Matthew 7:7-11). Prayer includes confession (1 John 1:9), praises (Revelation 4:11, 5:9), requests (Philippians 4:6-7) and thanksgiving (1 Thessalonians 5:18). Jesus modeled prayer for us by praying early and alone (Mark 1:35). God’s word guides us to pray continually, pray for government officials, pray for fellow believers, pray against temptation, pray for nonbelievers, pray for the gospel to be clear, pray for the harvest, etc.

As each of us has time in the car, on the golf course, alone or wherever, may we capture that time and use it to pray biblically and communicate with our mighty God!

Korky Kemp

September 24, 2012

Copyright 2012 Links Players International

The Links Daily Devotional appears Monday-Friday at www.linksplayers.com.