Key Verse: “and will give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word.” Acts 6:4
Richard Foster says ‘All who have walked with God have viewed prayer as the main business of their lives.’ This can be seen by David (Psalm 63:1), the apostles (Acts 6:4) and men of faith throughout the ages. Martin Luther declared, ‘I have so much business I can not get on without spending three hours daily in prayer.’ John Wesley said, ‘God does nothing but in answer to prayer.’ And backed this up by devoting two hours daily to prayer. For these men of faith, prayer was no little habit in their lives, it was their lives.
Now if this was true of David, the apostles, Luther, and Wesley, but also Jesus, how much more shouldn’t this also be true for us?
There is no activity in the life of a believer which does not require a prayerful attitude—a prayerful dependence on and an expectation that God is at work and will work according to His purposes and leading. In ourselves, we can do nothing.
In practical terms what exactly does this means? As an illustration, let’s look at the miraculous catch of fish in Luke 5:5-11. Probably Peter thinking something like, “Lord, you’re a great teacher, you’re the Son of God and Messiah, but we can handle this ourselves; we are expert fishermen. We have been fishing these waters for years. Besides, Lord, we fished these waters all night and we know the fish are simply not biting now.” But you see, living by faith and prayerful dependence upon God means living under the power and authority of the Lord Jesus Christ regardless of how things appear to us. What situation do you think you can handle by yourself?
Biblical Christianity is never a matter of living by who and what we are; our insight, our abilities, our background, our experience, our training, our giftedness, etc. Rather it is a matter of living by faith in Jesus Christ. But this only happens when we live in prayerful dependence upon the Father through a life of prayer.