“If ‘prayer’ were a hammer, and ‘the need’ a nail; does your prayer life look like a little ‘tack hammer’ tapping a little nail in some dry wall?”
These aren’t my words, and they didn’t come from a well known pastor or any pastor for that matter, these words came from an intern at a church who was given a Sunday morning service to talk about ‘persevering in prayer’.
This was July 23, 2012, when I heard this young man speak, and it was an unforgettable service, so I took notes. “Thank you Thor for a most inspiring message, I am just sorry that I did not write down more!”
This young man had lived 3 years in S. Korea doing his studies at the University there. He went on to tell a sanctuary filled mostly with young American students, that at 5am AND 7am the University in S. Korea has prayer meetings. ( I use the present tense because they had and they still have them! Shall I repeat this – at 5 AM and 7 AM the University has prayer meetings!)
That is amazing to me, to think that University has not only one, but TWO times for prayer – 5am, or 7am. And Thor went on to tell us Americans on a Sunday morning that the S. Korean students don’t want others to think they are lazy- so it is the 5am prayer meeting that is PACKED!
Can you imagine our American students adding to their already busy schedules – 5am Prayer Meeting? (How beautiful that would be.)
But that is what the students in South Korea do! Thor informed us that they pray for their University, they pray for their country, they pray for their neighbors, and their NEIGHBOR North Korea, and they pray for their relationship with the Lord and they pray for their relationships and they pray, pray, pray – out loud AND all at the same time! Yes! I must repeat that, they pray for EVERYTHING, out loud AND all at the same time!
Can you imagine Thor on that first occasion to witness such a thing! To Thor it must have been absolutely chaos, but to the Lord, it must be music to His ears and I can’t even imagine the fragrance of incense God breathes with prayer like this, knowing from the scriptures that our prayers are like incense to the Lord.
The students in this S. Korean University were teaching Thor something that NO classroom could ever teach him. He was ‘seeing’ what ‘persevering in prayer’ was.
Thor stated something that was very true: ‘when everything in life is just ‘sunny’ and everything’s going our way’ our prayers are like little ‘tack hammers’ tapping the little ‘nail of need’ in the dry wall.’
But what are your needs? Do you have needs that seem to be as big as a railroad-tie spike? And does the nail seem almost impossible to drive through because the wood seems to be thick, tough and knotted hard? What kind of hammer is needed for this kind of need, I mean nail!
Maybe we can learn something from these students. Thank you Thor for letting us know some good news that’s going on in other parts of the world.
This is incredible news – to think that the very first thing that they, (and I didn’t write this down, but I think Thor said that it was a stadium full of students,) do in the morning – is call upon God.
Now THAT is power. But we can call upon God in the same way, with persevering hearts, as we remind ourselves that: “He is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or [even] think” (Eph. 3:20), and that “Whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered.” The hammer becomes mightier and heavier. The power behind the hammer of our prayers become…
eyes and souls looking to God. “I cried unto the LORD with my voice; with my voice unto the LORD did I make my supplication.”(Ps. 142:1). “I pour out my complaint before Him; I declare before Him my trouble.”(Ps. 142:2). All of a sudden, our eyes are on Him, and in the processes of pouring our complaints to Him, we see Him for who He is. The One who is able. What a powerful testimony, in the midst of the trial and the trouble, there is yet a ‘peace that passes all understanding’.
Oh, yes, there is temptation to panic, but Jesus even instructs us to pray, “lead us not into temptation”, yes, the temptation to doubt and sit in a seat of ‘self-pity’, but to pray, “deliver us from evil!” (Matthew 6:13). God increases our faith as we pray, “For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. (Matthew 6:13).Amen.”
There might be knots in the wood, and NOTHING seems to be happening. That is when we must plead with God and persevere in prayer. We need to pray, anyway and every way; quiet, loud, alone with others – we need to pray, we need to persevere in prayer. We need to hammer on.
“Please God, help us to see the necessity of prayer. Help us to know You more through it. Help us to put that big, overwhelming nail into that hard and knotted wood and hammer away. And as we draw near to You Lord, You draw near to us, (James 4:8). Cleanse our hands, we are sinners; and purify our hearts. We humble ourselves in the sight of You Lord, and trust that You will lift us up.(James 4:10) “Attend to my cry, For I am brought very low;…Bring my soul out of prison, That I may praise Your name;…” (Psalm 142:7).
Can you hear all that racket going on? It’s hammers, I mean voices crying out to God. What a glorious sound it must be to Him.
Remember that old song, “If I had a hammer, I’d hammer in the morning…!” What do you say? These S. Korean students just showed us how! Let us ‘hammer on!’