WE lived in Pembrey Road in my teenage years. We didn’t have a phone and all calls were made from the phone box at the corner of Coldstream Street and West End.
Many a time I stood patiently in the box waiting for a pre-arranged call to come through most times to the annoyance of those waiting outside.
I once had to rush over to call the doctor when a neighbour fell ill and the phone box became the means of sharing news both good and bad.
I remember once seeing lines of people outside as the word had got around that some mechanism had failed and you could make any length of call without paying. I just about remember button ‘A’ and ‘B’.
You pressed button ‘A’ if you had a reply ‘B’ to get your money back if you failed to get through. All that sounds quaint and of an age long gone as we all hold on to our mobiles and where tweeting and texting and the red phone boxes have all but disappeared.
Long before Alexander Graham Bell thought of the telephone God gave us the wonderful gift of prayer.
How prayer actually works is as much a mystery to me as the latest communication technology. Its worth, however, has been proved so many times in the lives of those who believe that God hears the prayers of those who turn to him.
Prayer, of course, is not confined to time and space, it does not depend on systems or technological expertise. It is as simple as a child coming to his or her Father and knowing that he listens and cares because within the greatness and glory of the God who fills the universe is a Father’s heart of love reaching to all who call upon him.
There may be times when the answers we want never seem to come and our faith is tested. It is then we need to be reminded that God has eternity to work out his purposes and that all the prayers we offer for the good of ourselves and others are heard by him and answered according to his will.
Jesus said ‘Ask and it will be given to you; search, and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.
For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who searches finds and for everyone who knocks the door will be opened.’
The lines are open and the God who hears our prayers neither slumbers nor sleeps.