Summer Breeze, Week 4 of 6: Does God Act On Our Behalf?
Devotions for Mendakota friends, 2022
Rick Mattson (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Week 1 on the Lord’s Prayer is here
Week 2 on Making Contact is here
Week 3 on Return to the Dark Valley is here
Last week we saw how God promises his presence with us. He walks with us through every dark valley. This week: Does God get involved in our lives more actively? Does he intervene? Answer prayer?
Scripture: On a Sabbath Jesus was teaching in one of the synagogues, and a woman was there who had been crippled by a spirit for eighteen years. She was bent over and could not straighten up at all. When Jesus saw her, he called her forward and said to her, “Woman, you are set free from your infirmity.” Then he put his hands on her, and immediately she straightened up and praised God. (Luke 13:10-13)
Story: A few years ago my wife Sharon suffered from chronic shoulder pain. This went on for months, with no relief.
Then our friends Michael and Rachel came and prayed for Sharon. They laid hands on her shoulder and asked the Lord for healing.
Sharon was cured that very day.
Since then Sharon and I have practiced an ongoing ministry of healing prayer for others, and have seen many positive results. Cancer and other illnesses have disappeared.
But not every time.
When university students ask me this question, I tell them I don’t know all the reasons. God’s ways are higher than ours.
Commentary: But I also suggest they think of God as a wise parent who knows when to give gifts (of healing, for example) and when to withhold. He knows when to shower blessings and miracles, and when to allow us to experience trials – some of them severe.
If we wish to see God more involved, think of the difference between
1) a distant child who calls her parents only twice/year. And then merely to ask for money. And,
2) a child who regularly invites her parents for conversation over meals, outings, and celebrations.
The second child is more likely to receive the blessings and resources of her parents, due to the close relationship. She has said yes to their offer of grace. Similarly for us and God.
Try this prayer, if you wish: ”God, please walk with me today. Sit at my table. Enter my household. Pour out your blessings and miracles. And help me to trust you when you don’t always give me what I ask.”
- Psalm 23: I recite it often. And every day I pray, “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.”
- You may enjoy my short book, Faith Unexpected, which tells inspiring faith stories. Free for Mendakota members and employees. Just email me or mention it when you see me.