Throughout its 150-year history, OMF has placed a high priority on prayer. “Have faith in God” is a verse that is displayed prominently at OMF’s international headquarters in Singapore. The value on prayer has been present ever since Hudson Taylor knelt on Brighton Beach in England in June 1865 to ask God for missionaries to reach the inland provinces of China.
Over the years, Taylor and other CIM workers became known for their thoughts on prayer. Below is a collection of inspirational quotes from Taylor and J.O. Fraser, missionary to the Lisu people of Southwest China. Read and be moved to intercede for God’s work around the world.
“Believing prayer will lead to whole-hearted action.”
“How important, therefore, to learn before leaving England to move man through God by prayer alone.” (J. Hudson Taylor. A Retrospect. Philadelphia: China Inland Mission, n.d., 15.)
Writing to the CIM’s friends and supporters: “Pray for those you send, shield them by prayer.” (A.J. Broomhall. Hudson Taylor and China’s Open Century, Book Six: Assault on the Nine. London: Hodder and Stoughton and Overseas Missionary Fellowship, 1988, 294.)
“You can work without praying, but it is a bad plan; but you cannot pray in earnest without working. Do not be so busy with work for Christ that you have no strength left for praying. True prayer requires strength.”
The story of J.O. Fraser and the CIM’s work among the Lisu people of Southwest China is filled with persevering prayer. In particular, Fraser impressed on his prayer supporters back in England the importance of their role (intercession) in the work he was doing in seeing the gospel spread among the animistic Lisu.
“I am feeling more and more that it is, after all, just the prayers of God’s people that call down blessing upon the work, whether they are directly engaged in it or not. Paul may plant and Apollos water, but it is God who gives the increase; and this increase can be brought down from heaven by believing prayer, whether offered in China or in England. . . . If this is so, then Christians at home can do as much for foreign missions as those actually on the field. . . . What I covet more than anything else is earnest, believing prayer.” (Geraldine Taylor. Behind the Ranges: The Life-changing Story of J.O. Fraser. Singapore: OMF International (IHQ) Ltd., 1998, 52.)
“It is necessary for me to go around preaching, teaching, exhorting, rebuking; but the amount of progress made depends almost entirely on the state of the spiritual tide in the village – a condition which you can control upon your knees as well as I.” (Geraldine Taylor. Behind the Ranges: The Life-changing Story of J.O. Fraser. Singapore: OMF International (IHQ) Ltd., 1998, 203.)
“Solid, lasting missionary work is done on our knees.” (Geraldine Taylor. Behind the Ranges: The Life-changing Story of J.O. Fraser. Singapore: OMF International (IHQ) Ltd., 1998, 52.)
Fraser, J.O. – On 5 February 1916, Fraser wrote, “I’m now setting my face like a flint: if the work seems to fail, then pray; if services, and the like, fall flat, then pray still more; if months slip by with little or no result, then pray still more and get others to help you.” (Geraldine Taylor. Behind the Ranges: The Life-changing Story of J.O. Fraser. Singapore: OMF International (IHQ) Ltd., 1998, 154.)
Fraser, J.O. – Fraser urged his prayer partners to assume a greater role. “I am not asking you just to give ‘help’ in prayer as a sort of sideline, but I am trying to roll the main responsibility of this prayer-warfare on you. I want you to take the BURDEN of these people upon your shoulders. I want you to wrestle with God for them” (Geraldine Taylor. Behind the Ranges: The Life-changing Story of J.O. Fraser. Singapore: OMF International (IHQ) Ltd., 1998, 225.)
God heard Hudson Taylor’s, J.O Frasers and their nameless (to us) supporters. Today, the Chinese church numbers approximately 100 million and the Lisu people are known as a Christian people group. As someone once said, “History belongs to the intercessors!”
For more quotes from Hudson Taylor and OMF’s history, see this link: https://omf.org/us/about/our-story/quotes/.
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