Friday, February 20, 2004

It Really Works!

I hope your semester is going well. May seems to be approaching sooner and sooner. While that fact can cause a lot of stress, as people of faith we have a unique stress-buster that literally works miracles. I know that as Mid-Terms and Finals loom closer, many of you use access this de-stressor quite a bit. What am I talking about? Prayer, of course.

Early this afternoon I received a phone call from my Mom sharing about how God miraculously answered prayers for one of our family members. This is a situation that seemed hopeless, that has lasted for over a year, and that we have been praying about ceaselessly as a family for a long time. Just when things seemed most impossible, God came through. And in an instant, a terrible trial was over. Praise the Lord! This is something ONLY God could have done.

Just this morning I felt led to e-mail a prayer to this family that is so close to my heart, encouraging them to TRUST in the Lord, to TRUST that He has heard ALL of our prayers, and that in His mercy, no matter the outcome, He has answered in love. And then two hours later I get a phone call from my Mom confirming that God had moved in a mighty way.

Today, I want to encourage you to take inventory of your prayer life over the last few months. What have you been praying for regularly? Where has your heart been moved the most? Where is your spirit most involved and most actively petitioning God’s help? When days, months, and even years pass without seeing any “visible” answers to our prayers, it is easy to give up. But be encouraged. The One we are praying to stands alone. No one else is as loving, merciful, or WISE. Things that we may not understand He has a perfect grasp of. And He is working in ways that we cannot see. Know that every prayer you have prayed is a precious treasure in His sight. He honors and values each one, because God LOVES to hear from you. He may redirect it; He may postpone fulfilling it; He may even seem to reject the outcome you are laboring for. Yet in every case God is giving you His best. He is giving you His heart, His presence, His peace, if you let Him. Know that YOU are precious in His sight, and He hears and answers EVERY prayer you send up.

If you are struggling in prayer over a situation that hasn’t seemed to budge for a long time, know that you are not alone. My heart goes out to you. There are some prayers in my own life that I continue to hope for, even though years have passed since I began praying them. Let us labor together. Let us continue to encourage one another. Let us continue to hope, not so much in the prayers themselves, but in the One that we are praying to. God’s answers may tarry, but in the end there will be no doubt that God hand has been powerfully at work.

In the meantime, I am doing an anticipatory happy dance. God is so good; I’m going to thank Him ahead of time.

Blessings and love,


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