All Kinds of Prayers

by Scarlett Stough

Have you been praying, but your petitions seem to be ignored? The Holy Bible gives us encouragement to keep praying:

Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up.
Luke 18:1

Jesus told his disciples this story which has been recorded and preserved for us today; a story about a widow who continued to beg an unjust judge, perhaps a corrupt official, to give her the justice the judge had the power to provide. She was ignored over and over again finally wearing him down; he gave her what she wanted just to get her out of his courtroom.

God is not an unjust judge. Jesus gives us this picture of God:

…will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?
Luke 18:6-8

The Ephesian church was encouraged:

And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.
Ephesians 6:18a

The Philippian church was encouraged:

…The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:5b-7

Revelation gives us an inside view of God's Court. One of these scenes takes place just before the seven angels sound the seven trumpets. The scene opens with complete silence for half an hour (Revelation 8:1). If this were a movie, we would be feeling the suspense of waiting for the next action to take place. That next action is about prayer:

Another angel, who had a golden censer, came and stood at the altar. He was given much incense to offer, with the prayers of all the saints, on the golden altar before the throne. The smoke of the incense, together with the prayers of the saints, went up before God from the angel's hand.

Then the angel took the censer, filled it with fire from the altar, and hurled it on the earth; and there came peals of thunder, rumblings, flashes of lightning and an earthquake.
Revelation 8:3-5

Before those trumpets sound, God listens to our prayers. Remember that saints are not some special class of Christian; saints are all those called and chosen to belong to Christ and receive life (Romans 1:7; 1 Corinthians 1:2). Are you praying “Thy kingdom come?” Are you distressed by all the ungodly deeds and injustice within our societies? Are you crying out for justice? Well, your prayers, our prayers, are being heard. When the time is right, God will bring that justice quickly.