Prayer and activity go hand in hand.
“It is recorded of D. L. Moody that, upon one of his journeys across the Atlantic there was a fire in the hold of the ship. The crew and some volunteers stood in line to pass buckets of water. A friend said to Moody, ‘Mr. Moody, let us go to the other end of the ship, and engage in prayer.’ The common-sense evangelist replied, ‘Not so, sir; we stand right here and pass buckets and pray hard all the time.’ How like Moody this was! He believed that prayer and work were the two hands of the one person: that they should never be separated.—Christian Herald (London).” There is the attitude among some that the less organized the work, the more spiritual one is.
Some time ago I wrote an article about plans and methods to reach a larger segment of one’s community. In that article I failed to mention the Holy Spirit. I receive a scathing response reprimanding me of the omission. Of course the respondent does not, and never has pastored a church, nor did he give his name. Typically, he was fresh out of Bible College; Wasp are always largest when first hatched.
I remember one of my Bible teachers telling us, “If you think yelling ‘amen’ in this class will give you a passing grade, you are in for a big surprise. I expect you to study and get a passing grade.” I discovered that he meant exactly what he said.
[pullquote align=”right” cite=”” link=”” color=”” class=”” size=””]Activity is never an excuse to neglect prayer, nor is prayer an excuse to not work your smartest[/pullquote]
Prayer should precede everything. It is wise to pray before you answer your phone. You would think this would be understood, and I think the mature believer does. I am confident that neither writer nor reader prays enough. The Scriptures are clear on the subject of prayer. We need to pray more.
Now, I do not mean any disrespect by the following, but you can pray till you are blue in the face; and God will not mow your lawn for you. He will not sing in the choir, teach a Bible class, clean the buildings, wash the windows, preach the sermon, organize the ministry of your church, or drive a church bus. These, and many other things, are the practical side of the ministry, and must be done by men and women with understanding.
You don’t have to set down the bucket to pray while fighting a fire; pray and grab another bucket. Activity is never an excuse to neglect prayer, nor is prayer an excuse to not work your smartest; they are the two hands of the one person.
Pastor Ken Blue was born in Boswell, Ark. In 1955 he accepted Christ as his Savior. He and his wife Joyce were married in 1955. They have 5 children. He graduated from Midwestern Baptist Bible College in 1969 and started the Open Door Baptist Church in Lynnwood, Wa. where he pastored for 39 years. Because of health issues (ALS) he was forced to resign as pastor. It is his desire to continue to be used of God to help pastors and believers through this ministry.