“Arise, cry out in the night: in the beginning of the watches pour out thine heart like water before the face of the Lord: lift up thy hands toward him for the life of thy young children, that faint for hunger in the top of every street.” (Lamentations 2:19 KJV)
It is the heartfelt, white hot prayers of the righteous that reach the ears of God.
Elijah was a man just like you or I, but he was a man who knew how to bring his inner man to the surface and live and express himself from the depths of his being.
No shallow prayers here, instead deep yearnings of the heart poured out passionately before a God he expected to hear and move in response to his earnest petition.
“The earnest (heartfelt, continued) prayer of a righteous man makes tremendous power available [dynamic in its working]. Elijah was a human being with a nature such as we have [with feelings, affections, and a constitution like ours]; and he prayed earnestly…"(James 5:16–17 AMP)
Prayer is a heart activity. We may enroll the help of our head to craft our petition, but delivery of the request must needs flow from the heart if it to reach its target.
In John 4:24, the Scriptures speak of God as a Spirit, and those who come close to worship must do so in spirit and truth. From the heart.
Throughout the Scriptures the pictures pour out…
“Counsel in the heart of man is like deep water; but a man of understanding will draw it out.” (Proverbs 20:5 KJV)
“Therefore with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation.” (Isaiah 12:3 KJV)
“But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.” (John 4:14 KJV)
“He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.” (John 7:38 KJV)
Again and again the picture is of a flow.
The supernatural nature of heartfelt prayer is spontaneous. It springs and flows from the inner man.
Prayer is not merely a concoction of the mind directed heavenward, it is a synergy of God and man mixed in the ‘belly’ that gushes forth in fervency.
Prayer is WET and WILD not dry and dreary!
The devil, curse his unholy name, has done a marvelous job convincing the church that prayer is staid and boring, a dreary encumbrance or a dry duty.
But real prayer is nothing of the sort. Real praying is the polar opposite of this hell-inspired mockery of the mighty flow of the Holy Ghost that bubbles up within the believer and spills over with life-changing effect.
In order to engage fully in the act of prayer (you do realize that prayer is a verb? It is not a stationary thing or a monument to your spirituality, it is living, moving, alive and full of active personality) every part of your being should be involved.
Friend, if prayer is not emotional for you, are you certain that you are praying?
If prayer does not grip your body and invigorate your nerves and sinews, to whom are you directing your petitions?
The very life of God inside us yearns jealously for the will of God to be accomplished, and cries with passionate desire for the realities of heaven to be realized.
Paul spoke of it as sometimes being like a mother giving birth.
“My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you,” (Galatians 4:19 KJV)
Having attended the births of all my four kids I can testify that the process of bringing forth life is full of fervent emotion and physical exertion.
Can this be said of your prayer life?
I’m not saying that emotionalism is the answer, but, dear friends, I don't think the western church, certainly here in the UK anyways, is in any real danger of being over emotional in the prayer closet. At the football field, yes. In politics, fire and fury. In the cinema seat, tears streaming. But in the secret place?
I encourage you with all my heart. Give yourself wholeheartedly, full-bodied and emotionally-fired to the act of prayer, and you will be amazed at how God can come in and direct that flame and flow to fulfill His purposes.
Yes, we use our head, much like the sights of a gun. The Word and promise of God provide the crosshairs, but it is the incendiary explosive nature of the Holy Ghost gushing like a river of fire from our inner man that propels our prayers into the spirit realm where they powerfully take affect!
Outpourings of Heaven begins with outpourings of the heart on earth!