It’s an old hymn sung by faithful believers many years ago. I love the new praise and worship because it opens our hearts to the Word of God but the old hymns were written by people who lived in the trenches of life and knew that they knew that they knew God is real and ever present…
Originally a poem, “What a Friend We Have in Jesus” was never intended by the hymn writer, Joseph Scriven, for publication. Upon learning of his mother’s serious illness and unable to be with her in faraway Dublin, he wrote a letter of comfort enclosing the words of this text. Some time later when he himself was ill, a friend who came to see him chanced to see the poem scribbled on scratch people near his bed. The friend read it with interest and asked if he had written the words. With typical modesty, Scriven replied, “The Lord and I did it between us.”
The Words go like this –
What a Friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear!
What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer!
O what peace we often forfeit, O what needless pain we bear,
All because we do not carry everything to God in prayer.
Have we trials and temptations? Is there trouble anywhere?
We should never be discouraged; take it to the Lord in prayer.
Can we find a friend so faithful who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness; take it to the Lord in prayer.
Are we weak and heavy laden, cumbered with a load of care?
Precious Savior, still our refuge, take it to the Lord in prayer.
Do your friends despise, forsake you? Take it to the Lord in prayer!
In His arms He’ll take and shield you; you will find a solace there.
Blessed Savior, Thou hast promised Thou wilt all our burdens bear
May we ever, Lord, be bringing all to Thee in earnest prayer.
Soon in glory bright unclouded there will be no need for prayer
Rapture, praise and endless worship will be our sweet portion there.
Old Time Religion Stuff, but however sophisticated we Christians get, one thing remains true – we can never find a Friend so faithful and it is truly a privilege to take every need, every desire, every shortcoming, every friend and loved one to Him in prayer. Most of all, prayer is that intimate time we have of worship with the One True God.
I like what Ergan Caner said: The praise song that goes, “There’s no God like Jehovah” should really say, “There’s no God but Jehovah!”
Imagine, revel in and rejoice – we believers who are born again have the PRIVILEGE to take it to the Lord God Jehovah in prayer!
Here are some interesting quotes on prayer from some famous and not so famous believers:
Some people pray just to pray and some people pray to know God. –Andrew Murray
I have been driven many times to my knees by the overwhelming conviction that I had absolutely no other place to go. — Abraham Lincoln
Is prayer your steering wheel or your spare tire?– Corrie Ten Boom
Pray often, for prayer is a shield to the soul, a sacrifice to God, and a scourge for Satan –John Bunyan
We must alter our lives in order to alter our hearts, for it is impossible to live one way and pray another. –William Law
There is a general kind of praying which fails for lack of precision. It is as if a regiment of soldiers should all fire off their guns anywhere. Possibly somebody would be killed, but the majority of the enemy would be missed. –Charles Haddon Spurgeon
We lean to our own understanding, or we bank on service and do away with prayer, and consequently by succeeding in the external we fail in the eternal, because in the eternal we succeed only by prevailing prayer. –Oswald Chambers
Prayer does not fit us for the greater work, prayer is the greater work. –Oswald Chambers
And for those who struggle with their prayer time:
“…True prayer is measured by weight, not by length. A single groan before God may have more fullness of prayer in it than a fine oration of great length.” C. H. Spurgeon