I would love to have the faith of the centurion from Luke 7:1-10. Oh to have Jesus say “I have not found such great faith even in …” to me. But, far too often I fall in the “I do believe, help my overcome my unbelief” category from Mark 9:24. There has been a direct correlation between my faith and my prayers.
Since I have declared 2016 the year for getting serious about prayer, I have been praying for things, big and small and what feels like all the time. God is answering! Some prayers have been serious and some and been said almost without thinking. Here are just two that I hope will encourage you and make you smile.
First, I like most moms find getting out the door to school difficult especially on a Monday. One particular Monday morning, we were a good ten minutes late walking out the door. I was stressed and my oldest was frustrated and concerned that we were going to be late for school, after all he had been waiting for me to finish getting ready. We came up on the light that usually only lets three cars through at a time. We were about the sixteenth car in line. Without even thinking, I said what I thought was to myself, “Lord, it sure would be nice if that light stayed green.” God was listening even to my inner thoughts. When I called out to him. He heard and He blessed. The light stayed green! Prayer points were learned that day.
- God is listening all the time, even when we think we are talking to ourselves. Psalm 139:4 states, “Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O LORD.” This is comforting and scary all at the same time.
- God answers. The God who is concerned about the big details of my life is also in the small ones. Read these words from various verses of Psalm 65. “O you who hear prayer…You answer us with awesome deeds of righteousness, O God our Savior, the hope of all the ends of the earth and of the farthest seas, who formed the mountains by your power, having armed yourself with strength, who stilled the roaring of the seas , the roaring of the waves, and the turmoil of the nations..You care for the land and water it; you enrich it abundantly…you soften it with showers and bless its crops.” These verses show God’s power and his compassion. Read the entire Psalm if you need to be reminded of God’s goodness.
- God is the giver of good gifts. James 1:17 “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” He gives us the good stuff, even green lights.
- I can trust Him. This answer to my prayer was huge! I felt like if I could trust him to overhear my thoughts of how good a green light was then I could trust him to hear the thousands of prayers I have prayed to be cured from cancer. “To you O LORD, I lift up my soul; in you I trust, O my God…No one whose hope is in you will ever be put to shame,” Psalm 25:1-2. “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5-6 He knows the future and I can trust him with it, no matter what it holds. He’s already aware and He will be right there with me all the way.
I believe that God gave me the green light experience because he knew what the very next week would hold. As I met with the doctor she ended our conversation with “I’ll see you in a month, but if any bump pops up call me the same day you see it and we’ll get you in to see me.” Not extremely comforting words to hear.
Well you guessed it, a bump popped up just three days later. The emotional roller coaster ride began. I called the office and went in. After the examination she said, “we’ll know in two days if this is nothing or if we need to biopsy it. I am hopeful that it is nothing.” I remember thinking, “Me too.” Hayden and I began praying. Peace came. During our devotional time that evening, Hayden asked the kids to share some prayers that they thought they had seen God answer. Coleman was quick to say that God had answered prayers for good health. Without knowing anything about the spot, Coleman closed our devotional time in pray asking God to continue to give us good health. And he has, the spot faded away. It was just part of the healing process for my skin. The doctor will continue to watch my skin closely, but God has granted me favor thus far and I am so grateful. He has heard my prayers and he has blessed. I hope I will proclaim his goodness no matter what happens in my life, but it sure is easier when He answers the prayers exactly how I want them to be answered. God is good no matter what, but I thank him for green lights and no cancer and everything in between.
Loved reading this! I’m in new season of my life —- new church job with some unfamiliar territory that I’m covering! Prayer has been what makes it all happen….. and there have been many things occur that I know that ONLY GOD could have done that! My favorite story being the time I was asked to get someone to provide a meal (new church, didn’t know many people) ….. literally 5 minutes later, I get an email literally saying: if you need someone to make food —- I’m your person! I love how your kids are seeing real life happen …. and answers to prayer are things they can hold onto later. HE certainly does know the future and HE certainly answers prayers. You are right: not all prayers that He answers are exactly how we want them to be answered. But we don’t know the future…. He does! Keep writing, my friend!
WOW! How I needed your encouragement today! God’s timing is perfect. I pray that he will direct your path clearly in the new ministry position. He is so perfect at giving us exactly what we need when we need it. Love you!
Amen! Love you too!
I love this post!! I downloaded it several days ago, but was waiting for a still moment to really drink it in. And you took me on a ride, alright. I clenched up with not only the bump, but even with the late to school bit (though quite different grades of clenching, to be sure). You are SO right about God’s attentiveness to our thoughts and heart’s desires. In fact, there have been times when I’ve harbored desires in my heart, not even voicing them to myself, much less Him or anyone else, and then He’s given me the very thing I wanted. And usually, once I get it, I realize it wasn’t all it was cracked up to be. So, now I really try to guard my heart about lingering too long in a state of secretly desiring something. Now, I just outright say, “Lord, just please protect my heart and mind from straying. Give me only what You know is best for me.” He’s so faithful and kind and patient…I’m so glad THIS ONE, the Great I AM, the ALPHA and OMEGA is our God.
Bea and I had a great time when she was here, and they’re talking about inviting her back for a two week training stint in August. We’ll see. The final morning we were here, we had a lovely discussion about how Jesus is DIFFERENT from other gods. He IS! See, she wears this necklace with this green goddess and other religious symbols, along with the cross (UGH!!NOOOOO!!!!), because she touts espousing the good in all. But she could agree that there’s only ONE CREATOR GOD, and that none except the cross on her necklace symbolize Him. Then I just asked her outright which god among the others even professed to LOVE its followers…silence… Our God made that claim and proved it, sending Christ to die on the cross for us while we were yet sinners. They are NOT THE SAME. But we didn’t argue. She actually listened that final morning, and finally just rolled over, ostensibly to think about what was said. But there are so many layers of pride and deception over her. I just keep praying. Professionally, though, she indeed knocked the ball out of the park and was delightful her whole visit. I thank God for that! I do love her so.
Ok, I’d better go for now. I’m leading a Bible Study on Acts 13 tomorrow, so I need to focus on that more this evening. But I wanted to check in and let you know how delighted I am every time I see “Abundantly His” in my in-box.
Heaps o’ love,
I love you! Thank you for sharing about your visit with Bea. When you shared that she was coming or had come (I cannot remember if you told us before or after.) I prayed for her salvation. I’m still praying. Oh thank you Lord for a good conversation. God received some glory from that one my friend. I pray her heart will be soft to him and by August she will be 100% His! Oh what rejoicing we’ll do when that happens.
Thank you for your love and encouragement. Please pray that my mind will be guarded especially from worry. The Lord is good and he has made me healthy. I pray I will stop worrying and start living each day for Him. I want to make an impact for the kingdom and bring him much glory.
I love you!