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    We praise God for an awesome week at PLBC Sports Camp! Our kid athletes played their hearts out, and our staff volunteers joyfully ministered each of these last five nights. Thank you parents and staff for making PLBC Sports Camp a part of your family’s summer! Now enjoy some video highlights from the week! ⚽️🏀🏐🏈
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      Article by Terry Stephens

      Through Your Prayers

      The psalmists clearly declare, “Our God … does whatever He pleases” (Ps. 115:3; cf. 135:6). What reassuring truth -- the will of the beneficent Sovereign is never thwarted (Job 42:2).

      The hymn writers also said it well – “no power of hell, no scheme of man” can ever alter the purposes of the God who commands destiny.  

      Given His limitless power and perfect ways, we may wonder if our prayers matter. Do the prayers of God’s people truly make a difference? Amazingly and graciously, the answer is Yes! The One who does “all things well” (Mark 7:37) also sometimes ordains that the prayers of His people are a means to fulfilling His purposes.

      The apostles prioritized intercessory prayer. Paul certainly understood His apostolic calling (Acts 9:15; Gal. 1:1). The apostolic message is the word of God (1 Thess. 2:13; 2 Tim. 3:16). Though sent as a messenger of Christ, he still humbly appealed to the saints to pray for preaching opportunities and message clarity -- "praying at the same time for us as well, that God will open up to us a door for the word, so that we may speak forth the mystery of Christ, for which I have also been imprisoned; that I may make it clear in the way I ought to speak" (Col. 4:3-4).

      When Paul was excessively burdened by affliction, the prayers of the saints in Corinth could be a means through which Paul could be helped and God honored: “you also joining in helping us through your prayers, so that thanks may be given by many persons on our behalf for the favor bestowed on us through the prayers of many” (2 Cor. 1:11).

      Even incarceration would not diminish the apostle’s confidence in the instrumentality of godly prayer: “for I know that this will turn out for my deliverance through your prayers and the provision of the Spirit of Jesus Christ” (Phil. 1:19); and “At the same time also prepare me a lodging, for I hope that through your prayers I will be given to you” (Philemon 1:22).

      The righteous God calls His righteous people to be devoted to prayer (Dt. 32:4; 2 Cor. 5:21; Col. 4:2). How loving He is to meet us in such devotion, transforming us and expanding our capacity for prayer. The more we pray, the more we desire to pray. As we grow in prayer, we also, by His grace, grow in Christlikeness (Luke 5:16; Rom. 8:29). 

      We cannot always know how God will use our prayers. Sometimes, we do not know how we should pray (Rom. 8:26). Nevertheless, we are fully persuaded that "the prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective" (Jam. 5:16). What might He yet do through your prayers?

      1. Thank you, Terry, for your focus on prayer! I have been encouraged on Sundays knowing that the morning has been bathed in prayer.
      2. Right now (or ever) our prayer life cannot falter. Thank you Terry, for this vital emphasis.