We all long to make a lasting difference! We all hope to leave a lasting legacy. However, often our lives become incredibly busy as we try to accomplish as much as possible. As a result, what then becomes of our legacy?
J.N. Andrews, an Adventist Pioneer, was an incredibly busy man, but he left an amazing legacy. A major part of this was his book “History of the Sabbath and First Day of the Week.” Because Elder Andrews slept in a bed in the Review office while writing this book, he found it difficult to find a private place to pray during the day.
M.S. Boyd, a firsthand observer, recounts the story:
“Elder Andrews said he must find a place where he could pray for divine help and clarity of thought. He searched through the building, but could find no place for retirement except in an attic, where back numbers of the periodicals were stored. This he converted into his sanctum, and frequently we would see him winding his way through the composing room to an almost perpendicular ladder which led to that dimly lighted, ill-ventilated place, where he would spend hours pleading for wisdom to present correctly the truths that have since enlightened the world regarding the history of the Sabbath”(M.S. Boyd, “The First Italian Tract,” Review and Herald, September 18, 1924, p. 61).
What an incredible example of prioritizing much time in prayer! Should we be surprised at the eternal impact of J. N. Andrew’s work? Ellen White clearly states: “Only the work accomplished with much prayer, and sanctified by the merit of Christ, will in the end prove to have been efficient for good” (The Desire of Ages, p. 362).
Now, to be honest, when things get busy, when we are behind at work, when we wonder how we are going to accomplish everything we need to do — How often do we take time out during the day to pray? When a committee or board meeting is going frustratingly long, the last thing many want to hear is: “Let’s spend some time praying together.” But scripture is clear, “…effective, fervent prayer… avails much” (James 5:16).
Clearly, we’ve got to change our priorities!
“None need feel that they are too busy to pray, too full of business cares to spend an occasional fifteen minutes to seek counsel from God. My brethren, make God your entire dependence. When you do otherwise, then it is time for a halt to be called. Stop right where you are, and change the order of things” (Manuscript 24, 1891).
Zac Page is pastor of Templeton Hills Seventh-day Adventist church in Central California. He and his wife Leah are passionate about prayer and about helping people develop a genuine authentic walk with God.
Note: To view this week’s world church prayer requests, click here!