James 5:16 says The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.
The King James version is so rich. It’s an oft quoted verse that rolls off our tongue but do we really grasp what I it means? Let’s unpack it…
“Effectual” – this means “effective”. Well, duh, of course we want effective prayers! The question is – how to do that? How can we pray effectively? How do we pray so that He will answer with “yes”? How do we pray “according to His will”?
We pray His Word! His Word is His Will! So when we pray His Word, we can know He says Yes! How do we do that? We will see in just a second. Let’s unpack the rest of the verse first…
“Prayer of a righteous man(woman)” – you might think, there’s the catch, I’m not righteous enough! Thankfully, the effectiveness and the much availing of our prayers does not depend on our righteousness! If we are in Christ, then His righteousness is counted as ours. Hallelujah! Our fellowship with the Father can be affected by our sin (Psalm 66:18) but our right standing before Him – and His hearing of our prayers – is not based on our ability to be righteous.
“Availeth much” – brings about great and mighty work! The work of our powerful and loving Heavenly Father. Working good in the lives of people. Granting good gifts. Changing the hearts of those in authority. Bringing light into darkness. Guidance and direction for us to follow. Provision for our lack. Yes, that is the “much” we desire!
All this is the work of God. What is our part?
“Fervent”. Showing great intensity and perseverance. That is our part. Persistent praying. Faithful faith. Deep desire. Although even this is possible because God grants us His grace, this is where we have a part in seeing our prayers answered. God is looking for women who are willing to pray (Ezekiel 22:30) so that He might answer. He wants women who will not give up but will persevere in praying.
Will you be one?
Here are some effectual prayers we righteous women can pray fervently…and watch Him avail much!
For joy (Philippians 3:1)
For no bitterness (Hebrews 12:15)
For Godly friends (Proverbs 13:20)
For diligence (Romans 12:11)
To not be critical (Romans 14:13)
To have a servant’s heart (Philippians 2:3)