Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. Elijah was a human being, even as we are. He prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the land for three and a half years. Again he prayed, and the heavens gave rain, and the earth produced its crops.
— James 5:16-18 NIV

fight for one another in prayer

Here in this passage, James intertwines community and prayer with one another to give us a picture of what intersession looks like—to fight for one another in prayer. When James calls on us to confess our sins to one another, he is showing us that interceding for one another sometimes requires vulnerability with others; however, in that place we are able to stand in the gap for others and ask for healing. He seals the importance of intercession with this powerful statement: “The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective” – let that be an encouragement to you! Your prayers are powerful. 

Many times we doubt our ability to intercede for others and even ourselves because we don't fully believe the Lord hears us or wants to use us. I think James knew that so he gave us an example of someone, Elijah, who was just like us yet God listened to Him and responded. He prayed that it would not rain which seems like a pretty crazy prayer, but He had faith that God would hear Him and He did. When we understand that the Lord listens to us just as He did to Elijah, we will begin to see our prayer lives transform- our faith and desire to pray will be increased.

a practical step

This week, I want you to spend some intentional time with Jesus. I want you to talk to Him and ask Him to give you faith where you need it, to intercede for your brothers and sisters in Christ, and to pray big. There is so much the Lord wants to do through you and on this campus, but He is simply waiting for you to ask. I want you to believe that your prayers are powerful, that there is nothing too big that the Lord cannot do in your life! Hold onto the truth that James has given us! 

pray

Jesus,

Give me faith to believe that you hear me and want to speak to me. There is nothing too big or too impossible for you to do. Bring me into a deeper intimacy with you where I, as Your sheep, know your voice. Thank you for hearing me!!

Amen. 

-Kayley Anderkin