Dear Members and Friends of IBCZ,
Chinese Christian leader and author Watchman Nee (1903-1972), made this observation about prayer: “Our prayers lay the track down upon which God’s power can come. Like a mighty locomotive, his power is irresistible, but it cannot reach us without rails.”
Last Sunday in our study of The Lord’s Prayer, we considered the petition, “Give us this day our daily bread.” We noted that the eternal and all-knowing God knows what we need even before we ask. Yet, it is still important to pray and take our concerns to God, for regular pray helps keep our relationship with God alive and fresh, and we experience in a deeper way the assurance of God’s faithfulness as we see God answer our prayers. If God simply blessed us with an abundance of good things, but we never asked God for anything, the awareness that it is indeed God providing for us would soon slip away. As a result, our own faith and confidence in God would weaken.
Watchman Nee presents us with another reason to take our needs before the Lord even though God already knows about them. Knowing how important it is that we are aware it is God providing us with good things, and it is not simply due to good fortune or even our own efforts, God has chosen to, in some ways and at some times, limit His activity in our lives. This isn’t because God wants to keep good things from us, but simply that we would know we have a Heavenly Father who loves us and provides for us. Thus, God has chosen to work through our prayers.
As Watchman Nee pictured it, our prayers are like railroad tracks. Like a mighty locomotive, God could simply use His power to pour out His blessings on us. But so we remain ever mindful of God’s care and faithfulness, some gifts from God come only in response to our prayers. Our prayers are like the rails along with God’s blessings come.
So, let’s with confidence take our concerns to our Heavenly Father, and as we do, may our love for God grow as we experience His love for us, and may our faithfulness to God increase as we experience His faithfulness to us.
Grace and peace,