Recently, I was sharing with a group of church people about the need for corporate prayer, especially intercession, when the following quote came to mind:
What if there are some things that God either will not do or cannot do until and unless we pray?
Maxie Dunnam, former president of Asbury Theological Seminary, used to ask that question every so often in chapel or in small group conversations. And often, in his usual Maxie-style, he would quickly add, “Let me say that again.” And he would repeat the question, just to make sure you heard it.
The first time I heard him say it, it didn’t mean that much to me. However, the longer I’ve lived with it, the more meaningful it has become.
God has invited us to participate in His work here on earth. Though He could do it without us, He has chosen not to. He wants our help. He longs for our participation.
Prayer is a part of that. Consider: What if there really are some things that God has decided not to do until we ask Him for them?
That’s an incredible thought. God’s waiting on you and me to ask for certain things in prayer before He will do them. He wants to do it. He wants to bless. He wants to heal. He wants to redeem. But, He is waiting on you and me to pray for it. What if we never ask? What if we never pray for it?
Perhaps that’s part of why the church is the way it is today. We do not have because we do not ask. (cf. James 4:2-3)