Are You a Prayer Warrior?
It was late afternoon. I was finishing up a few things when my phone rang. It was my office phone and it hardly ever rings so I was a little startled. Completely abandoning my office phone-answering etiquette, I blurted out, “Hello?”
The voice on the other end urgently asked, “Are you the prayer warrior?!” Bemused, I hesitated for a few seconds and then said, “Yes. Yes I am the prayer warrior. How can I pray for you?” He shared his prayer request, I asked him a few follow up questions and then prayed for him.
When we finished praying, I asked how he got my phone number. He said he spoke with someone at The Salvation Army and she told him prayer is not in her department, but she would give him the appropriate phone number.
I began to think about those two related but almost opposite ways of looking at prayer and that led to these two questions:
Am I the prayer warrior? and Is prayer in my department?
First, I would change the to a and my answer to the first question would be: Am I a prayer warrior? I’d better be! Jesus tells us to pray by His words and His example. (Matthew 6:5 & 9; Mark 1:35; Luke 5:16, etc.). Paul is pretty clear when he says, “Pray continually.” (1 Thessalonians 5:16 – 18) I don’t know where I would be without prayer. Moment by moment I praise God for who He is, I thank Him for the blessings He’s given me, I confess sin, I intercede on behalf of my loved ones and friends and the occasional random person who calls me on my office phone. I pray for Facebook friends who request prayer, for the General of The Salvation Army (current and new), for my corps officers, the territory and the list goes on. Sometimes I pray without using any words at all. I can’t imagine NOT praying! As if I could just go about my life without ever communicating with God! I need Jesus every minute of every day. I’d be in deep trouble if I did not turn to God in prayer. So, yes, I am a prayer warrior. I have to be.
Question #2, “Is prayer in my department?” As a matter of fact, yes it is. Literally. (Spiritual Life Development Department!) But even if it wasn’t I would consider prayer to belong to all of us as Christians.
Many years ago, as a new Salvationist working at DHQ, I looked forward to the weekly chapel services. I learned several songs that really taught me a lot about prayer. One of my favorites, Song #625 in The Salvation Army Songbook, describes prayer in this way. Prayer is:
- the soul’s since desire (uttered or unexpressed)
- the burden of a sigh
- the falling of a tear
- the simplest form of speech
- the sublimest strains
- the contrite sinner’s voice
- the Christian’s vital breath
- the Christian’s native air
The last two descriptions spoke to me and I really began to take prayer more seriously. Praying is like breathing – I can’t live without it. As the lyrics say, “I’m desperate for You! Every hour I need You!”
There’s a saying that goes like this: “Be the kind of woman who, when her feet hit the floor each morning, the devil says, ‘O crap, she’s up!’” May it be true for me.
written by Lt. Col. Pat LaBossiere, Secretary for Spiritual Life Development, USA East