“The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.”
James 5:16

This is the last text in our sermon series “Faith that Works”. It comes down to prayer in this last text, prayer that is life-giving, saving, healing, truth-telling, revealing.  James declares that “The prayer of the righteous is powerful and effective.” It made me wonder, how do we know that our prayer is powerful or effective?  It’s not that I don’t believe that to be true, it’s that I want to know how that manifests itself in our daily lives. Do we see the power of prayer in action through the way we behave, the way that we speak, the ways that we care for others?  In a faith that works, prayer is an essential piece of our relationship with God, it’s the piece that connects on a personal level that opens us up to express our brokenness and our joys in ways that reveal our deeper connectedness to a God whose faith works for us.

This text describes the prayer of faith as one that we both receive and one that we share.  When I read these verses, I have also come to understand that sickness is not just a physical ailment, but it perhaps how we can identify sin, that sin in and of itself is a sickness.  When we come before God to pray, we should know that this is our faith in action.  We need an active faith to save the sick and bring forgiveness to the broken, to the sinners. Forgiveness itself, not a free pass or solely an act of grace, but God’s mercy on us as we confess our sins. The author says, “confess your sins to one another,” and pray for one another.  It is in our confession, coupled with prayer that is our faith in action and brings us to the healing mercies of Jesus Christ.
Pastor Carrie Baylis

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