Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed fervently that it might not rain, and for three years and six months it did not rain on the earth. Then he prayed again, and heaven gave rain, and the earth bore its fruit.
Wow! It didn’t rain for three-and-a-half years! Then Elijah prays it would rain and the heavens open up!
What a prayer! What clout with God! What power!
And I’m thinking: Well, that’s because it’s Elijah. Elijah was special. Elijah was different. Elijah was one of the most powerful prophets in the Bible. Why, Elijah didn’t even die; he just ascended right up to God.
So, my prayers could never have the effect that Elijah’s prayers had. Right?
Maybe you think that too. But is that why God inspires James to give the example of Elijah’s prayer, so we would recognize that our prayers could never do that?
I doubt it. I don’t think that is God’s heart at all. In fact, I know it’s not. God, knowing that we would think Elijah was exceptional and special, begins the example with these weighty words:
“Elijah was a man with a nature like ours.”
What is God saying to us here? Could God be telling us that our prayers can do the impossible, the unheard of, the miraculous? Do I need to view the power of prayer in a whole different way? Do I need to pray with a boldness and expectancy I’ve never had before?