JOURNAL ENTRY~November 11, 1989-Thoughts are beginning to come about messages I’m to give on prayer. It will be a call to know the mind of Christ. It must be more than mere technique, or setting certain hours, time or place. I believe often we do not pray aright, but ask in the flesh, setting our own agendas, totally overlooking God’s purpose for suffering and seeming misfortune.
The Lord may have more to accomplish through death . . . we must learn to look at others’ suffering through the eyes of Jesus, where is the cross in our praying? What about self denial? Glorifying the Lord? Where is the authentic surrender to our King which marks us as disciples and followers, not successful affluent achievers? Beware of telling those who suffer “if you had the faith you would be healed” or just as bad, “God doesn’t heal today, that ended with the first century.” Where is Jesus between the two extremes, commanding the Father to do our will or denying His power to accomplish His will?
Satan counterfeits and takes in many. Christ refuses to deal in the counterfeit. I think of Francis Schaffer dying of cancer and Corrie Ten Boom being personally delivered from prison. We need to pray for “wellness” which includes an acceptance of our mortality and eventual death. One can be sick to death in body but at peace in spirit.
REFLECTION~March 14, 2002-John tells the story of the man born blind. “His disciples asked, ‘Rabbi, who sinned; this man or his parents, causing him to be blind?’ Jesus said, ‘You’re asking the wrong question. You’re looking for someone to blame. There is no such cause-effect here. Look instead for what God can do. We need to be energetically at work for the One who sent Me here, working while the sun shines. When night falls, the workday is over. For as long as I am in the world, there is plenty of light. I am the world’s Light.” (John 9:1-4, The Message)
Suffering has many purposes, and as Jesus clarifies, is not necessarily the result of sin. In this case “that the works of God might be displayed in him.” (9:3b NASB) Before we tell the Lord what we think He should do, we need to ask. We need to continue asking for His will and purpose in any given situation. As Jesus later prayed, “yet not what I will but what You will.” (Mark 14:36b NASB)
Blessings- bob and marilyn yawberg-SAYING YES TO GOD- Pastors In Prayer- Vol. III #8
(Reflection first written in 2002- Vol. X # 15
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