On Saturday, I had the opportunity to go to one to the sessions of our women’s weekend retreat on prayer. I signed up for it before Ron had his stroke last week. But my daughter offered to watch him while I attended the one session on Saturday and stayed for supper. I’m glad I did.
Having time to pray and be challenged to grow in that area of my life, is always a good thing. When others ask to pray for me, I’m always touched deeply.
I am definitely rejuvenated by being with people, especially some of the ones who were there. One new friend, when we had a minute alone, apologized for not calling me since she didn’t have my phone number. She wanted specifics on how to pray for my husband and me. I am always humbled by that request. Especially when it comes from someone I know is busy.
But I should be glad. As she, a youngish mom of littles, will be blessed as she reaches out to others around her and prays for them. It is always a mutual blessing. But it never fails to touch me at a deep level when it happens.
Hope comes when we trust in the character and promises of GOD, not in people and how they will come through for us.
I find, however, that if i am expecting others to embrace me and offer me comfort in certain ways, it rarely happens. Unless I look for my hope and comfort first in the person and promises of GOD, I will always be disappointed in the ways people come through for me in times of need. They can do the very same things, but the joy and gratefulness are just not there. I always feel like something else should have been done.
It may even be diagnostic. Do you find yourself wondering why people aren’t doing enough for you? Do you find yourself dissatisfied with what they are doing to help? You may need to look at your heart…or better yet, ask the Spirit to examine it.
- Is your hope and comfort during this crisis time based on the comfort others give you? or is it based on who GOD is and how he is embracing you?
- Is your hope and stability based on how frail people come through for you or is it based on the promises of GOD and the truths He has given to support you?
- Are you dissatisfied with the kind of provision GOD is making for you during your crisis time?
These are questions you need to ask yourself. It’s good to be honest about it before GOD. He already knows how you really feel. He is never taken by surprise when you sin. It never shocks Him.
As you think through the diagnostic questions, also remember GOD forgives and enable us to move forward.
I know there have ben plenty of times I have not been happy with the ways GOD has provided for me including the ways He has used other people in my life. I often thought I deserved more kind words or more empathy. I may not have been able to admit it to myself for very long, but my anger, irritation, gloom, were often clues that this was the case.
We can come to GOD to confess our sin and failure when we are trusting in ourselves instead of Him to provide for us. Then we will know His loving embrace. Often, He uses other people in our lives to do that. But not always. The most important thing we need to learn is to go to Him when we are needy. He will provide what we need at the time.
Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness.For we do not know what to pray for as we ought,
but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.
And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit,
because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.
And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good,
for those who are called according to his purpose.
For those whom he foreknew he also predestined
to be conformed to the image of his Son,
in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.
And those whom he predestined he also called,
and those whom he called he also justified,
and those whom he justified he also glorified.
Romans 8:26-30 ESV
In him we have redemption through his blood,
the forgiveness of our trespasses,
according to the riches of his grace,
which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight
making known to us the mystery of his will,
according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ
as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him,
things in heaven and things on earth.
Ephesians 1:7-10 ESV