17 Elijah was a human being, even as we are. He prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the land for three and a half years. 18 Again he prayed, and the heavens gave rain, and the earth produced its crops.
As James gives all kinds of practical teaching on many aspects of the Christian life, he turns to prayer. To show the power we have in prayer, he gives the Old Testament example of Elijah. He prayed it wouldn't rain and it didn't. He prayed that it would rain and it did. Now someone might say he was a prophet and had special powers and a closer audience with God. But note James starts with the fact that Elijah was a mere man in every respect.
I think this is a big deterrent for us in our prayer. We don't either consider ourselves good enough to pray, or we can't pray eloquently enough. Or, another thing we believe is that God doesn't have time to worry about my petty concerns. There are all kinds of reasons not to pray, and all kinds of distractions that keep us from prayer. Like we are too busy to pray. Someone said I am so busy today, I need to spend at least an hour in prayer.
Notice it also says Elijah prayed earnestly. He didn't shy away from making his request known to God in an urgent manner, expecting to see the results he prayed for. And James says, "Again he prayed!" You wonder how many times he prayed before God answered his prayer? But we can assume it was more than once. People like Elijah inspire me to pray more often and more earnestly. Maybe our prayer lives are weak because we have lost faith because our prayers haven't been answered. We don't always see immediate results, but in persevering in prayer our faith needs to cling to God's promises. When we pray "again", we are saying "God I trust you agsin!"
Where in your life so you need to pray "again"??? Take time to pray earnestly to God for the things out of your control. If Elijah prayed for rain and it rained, is there anything we can't pray for?