Course: Prayer (1) The Importance of Effective Prayer


Lesson 1 (Effective Prayer)

 

An example of Effective Prayer

 

GEORGE MULLER, AND THE SECRET OF HIS POWER IN PRAYER

by Andrew Murray

 

PRAYER AND THE GLORY OF GOD.

 

In George Muller we have one of the most remarkable instances on record of God's Holy Spirit leading a man deliberately and systematically, at the outset of a course of prayer, to make the glorifying of God his first and only object. Let us ponder well what he says, and learn the lesson God would teach us through him:--

 

`I had constantly cases brought before me, which proved that one of the especial things which the children of God needed in our day, was to have their faith strengthened.

 

`I longed, therefore, to have something to point my brethren to, as a visible proof that our God and Father is the same faithful God as ever He was; as willing as ever to PROVE Himself to be the LIVING GOD in our day as formerly, to all who put their trust in Him.

 

`My spirit longed to be instrumental in strengthening their faith, by giving them not only instances from the word of God, of His willingness and ability to help all who rely upon Him, but to show them by proofs that He is the same in our day. I knew that the word of God ought to be enough, and it was by grace enough for me; but still I considered I ought to lend a helping hand to my brethren.

 

`I therefore judged myself bound to be the servant of the Church of Christ, in the particular point in which I had obtained mercy; namely, in being able to take God at His word and rely upon it.

 

The first object of the work was, and is still: that God might be magnified by the fact that the orphans under my care are provided with all they need, only by prayer and faith, without any one being asked; thereby it may be seen that God is FAITHFUL STILL, AND HEARS PRAYER STILL.

 

1.      CAREFUL NOT TO BE LED BY THE DESIRE OF SELF GRATIFICATION

`I have again these last days prayed much about the Orphan House, and have frequently examined my heart; that

        if it were at all my desire to establish it for the sake of gratifying myself, I might find it out.

        For as I desire only the Lord's glory, I shall be glad to be instructed by the instrumentality of my brother, if the matter be not of Him.

 

2.      OBJECTIVES

`When I began the Orphan work in 1835,

        my chief object was the glory of God, by giving a practical demonstration as to what could be accomplished simply through the instrumentality of prayer and faith,

        in order thus to benefit the Church at large, and

        to lead a careless world to see the reality of the things of God, by showing them in this work, that the living God is still, as 4000 years ago, the living God.

 

3.      RESULTS

This my aim has been abundantly honoured.

        Multitudes of sinners have been thus converted,

        multitudes of the children of God in all parts of the world have been benefited by this work, even as I had anticipated.

        But the larger the work as grown, the greater has been the blessing, bestowed in the very way in which I looked for blessing:

        for the attention of hundreds of thousands has been drawn to the work; and

        many tens of thousands have come to see it.

 

4.      NEW GOALS

All this leads me to

        desire further and further to labour on in this way, in order to bring yet greater glory to the Name of the Lord.

        That He may be looked at, magnified, admired, trusted in, relied on at all times, is my aim in this service; and so particularly in this intended enlargement.

        That it may be seen how much one poor man, simply by trusting in God, can bring about by prayer; and

        that thus other children of God may be led to carry on the work of God in dependence upon Him; and

        that children of God may be led increasingly to trust in Him in their individual positions and circumstances, therefore I am led to this further enlargement.'