|Words to Encourage Positive Living in a Negative World|
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© Jack E. Albright June 2017
I try each day to perfect be
first Lord for Thee–and then for she. (Anya)
For sure I think when she looks at me
she’s looking hard for Thee to see.
So help me Lord to perfect be
so she sees Thee when she looks at me.
As each day ends I cross my eyes
the end of my long nose to see
if any warts have grown on me.
BLIND HEARTS AND MINDS SABOTAGE PERFECT VISION
The Bible teaches that God has made himself available and knowable to every person on earth.
The eighth chapter of Psalms is a beautiful example of this: “When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have ordained, what is man that You are mindful of him, and the son of man that You visit him?” (Psalm 8:3-4 NKJV)
The New Testament proclaims the same message and holds people accountable for their failure to believe: “For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.” (Romans 1:20 (NLT)
One of the favorite songs I sang as a boy was: “Open my eyes that I may see, glimpses of truth Thou hast for me; Place in my hands the wonderful key that shall unclasp and set me free.”
I invite readers to read 2 Kings 6:8-23. This is the exciting story of how the king of Syria sent an army of soldiers to kidnap prophet Elisha and force him to do miracles for him.
One morning Elisha awoke and saw the enemy soldiers had surrounded his house. His servant became frightened when he saw the soldiers and Elisha said: “There are more on our side than on theirs.” Elisha prayed that the servant could see the protection that God had provided for them and when the servant looked up he saw that the hillside around Elisha was filled with horses and chariots of fire. (2 Kings 6:16)
That is an exciting story…but it happened hundreds of year ago. Your question and mine is, “What can God provide for me today? Will God surround me with horses and chariots of fire”? The answer is No. He will not send horses and chariots of fire, but what he will send is his Holy Spirit to protect us from the harm that is threatening us today.
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard (surround, shield, protect) your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”
A few days ago, I was in a group of fifteen Christians who listened to a person describe a painful and complicated situation in their life. One person said, “What we are discussing can only be solved by God, so let’s pray.” We joined hands and formed a prayer circle. Almost every person in the group voiced a prayer out loud. Others prayed silently.
This prayer took place at approximately 10:30 AM. At approximately 5:30 PM, the same day, the person who was the object of our prayers (in a distant city) Emailed an apology for his poor behavior. God had begun answering our prayers.
What will be our response to this obvious answer to prayer? We will sincerely thank God for assuring us that he does indeed answer prayer. One fact was very obvious in each audible prayer…not a single person voiced a prayer giving God instructions as to how to fix the problem. No one described the problem, as if God did not already know. None told God when and how to answer. No one pretended to “sound holy.”
Is that what Jesus meant when he instructed us: “When you pray, enter into your closet, shut the door, talk to God, and he will hear your prayer and reward you openly?”
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