I am not sure I know how to pray. Not the way Charles Cowman, the founder of One Mission Society, prayed. In his biography Missionary Warrior, Lettie Cowman writes of Charles, “The [mission] hall became so crowded that we prayed for larger quarters. On April 21, a poor woman sent a gift of five dollars, quoting Isaiah 54:2, ‘Enlarge the place of thy tent.’ It sent Charles to his knees, and he immediately claimed from God a larger building. In May, $1,000 came from a stranger who had felt the Lord leading him to make a gift to the Mission. It came just in time to purchase a splendid mission hall … Every dollar needed for its purchase was received.” Wow!
What did Charles say to God? Was it his words? His faith? A mixture of both? I think if I had received $5 from someone, praying about it would not have been my first response, yet, it was for Charles Cowman. Why?
Reading missionary biographies causes me to question my own prayer life. I know Jesus gave the disciples (and us) the Lord’s Prayer. Yet, I know something is different from the way I pray and the way Jesus prays, as I read in Scripture. My prayers sound so empty, unless I am in a serious state of struggle or pain. What about the rest of the days? The ones that are just “same old, same old.” What is missing?
I am not looking for a formula or a “magical wording” because I do not think that is the issue. I am missing some connection with the Lord that Charles Cowman possessed, as well as other spiritual giants like Hudson Taylor, Corrie Ten Boom, and Billy Graham. After some soul searching, I must admit, it is the intimacy of my prayers, or rather, the lack of intimacy. Lord, teach me to pray like that!
Therefore, I am so excited about the One Mission Society Prayer Summit coming up September 29 – October 1. The cry of my heart is to know how to communicate with my Father in heaven like Jesus did in the upper room and how the founder of OMS did back in the late 1800s and early 1900s.
God has not changed since the dawn of time. How then should I enter into the presence of Almighty God? I am determined to find out at the OMS Prayer Summit. If you want a deeper, more meaningful prayer life, please go to prayersummit.onemissionsociety.org. Click the link to find more information and to register for the summit.
By Beth Jordal, OMS Communications