Wednesday, May 18, 2005

prayerless days

There used to be a cheesy poster displayed outside our churches saying 'seven prayerless days makes one weak.' Ffortunately we don't do that kind of thing anymore.

Sadly, like a lot of cheesy things, it contains an essential truth that we might have lost when we threw the posters away: we need to pray. If God's people want to see God working, we need to pray. If we are in need, we need to pray. If we are rejoicing that everything in our lives is hunky dory, we need to pray.

Another cliche suggests 'prayer changes things'. Like lots of cliches, it's true.

When Tony Blair was re-elected, I wrote to him, saying 'well done' - a third consecutive labour term is historic. My concern for his third term is that he drives forward the agenda on making poverty history in his role as chair of the G8 and EU this year.

I also assured him that we would be praying for him. The Make Poverty History agenda is unachievable without prayer. There are too many deep-rooted structural powers that will not be shifted by human effort, argument and dialogue. They are spiritual and are shifted only through the exercise of spiritual power that is tapped and unleashed through prayer.

So as we march and write, campaign and inform, we also need to pray. If we want fewer children to die of stupid poverty (Bono's phrase), we need to pray. If we are to have the energy to sustain this campaign for this year and beyond, we need to pray.

The cliche has it that 'prayer is the powerhouse of the church'. And that's true too. Prayer releases God's power in our world that is vital for achieving anything.

So let's not have prayless days otherwise we will be too weak to change the world.

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