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AGENTS OF CHANGE
LORD, THERE IS NOTHING I CAN DO
Years ago, during a Christian Booksellers Convention I was attending in England, I visited my family in Scotland. Because of the coalminers' strike, a general transportation strike was called in sympathy for the miners. It appeared that I would be stranded in Scotland, unable to return in time for the convention.
My brother drove me to Glasgow with the hope that I could get a train to Preston and from there catch the train for Blackpool, the convention site. At the Glasgow station I was told there was only one train that might run on that day. I bought a ticket, praying that the train would leave. It did, and upon arrival at Preston I saw that the train for Blackpool was still scheduled. However, at the ticket counter the agent was waiting for its cancellation and refused to issue me a ticket. I was stranded forty miles from my destination ... no train, no bus, no taxi. As I stood there in what appeared to be a hopeless situation, I prayed, "Lord, you know my circumstances. There's nothing I can do. No transportation is available, yet I need to be in Blackpool this morning."
OUR ATTITUDE SHOULD BE, "ABOVE ALL ELSE, PRAY"
Twenty minutes later I noticed that the train had neither neither left nor been cancelled. Going once again to the ticket office, I asked for a ticket to Blackpool. This time the man sold me one and said that if a conductor could be found, the train would leave, I boarded the train and prayed, "Lord, we need a conductor." About three minutes later a conductor climbed aboard and I made it to Blackpool with a great sense of relief and thanksgiving. Only I knew why that train ran-God had answered prayer.
We often find ourselves in situations where there seems to be nothing we can do. This is because we forget that God has given us the tremendous privilege of prayer. And und unfortunately, when we do think of praying, it is often as a last resort. This is not a Christian perspective. Our attitude should be, "Above all else, pray."
WE ALL ASK IN DESPERATION, WHAT SHALL WE DO?
An incident in the life of the prophet Elisha illustrates an important principle. Because Elisha had been revealing Syria's plans to Israel, the army of the king of Syria surrounded the city of Dothan, seeking the prophet. When Elisha's servant saw the many horses and chariots encircling them, he rushed to his master in great fear, crying, "What shall we do?"
Elisha's response was simply pray, "Lord open his eyes," and the servant was amazed to see God's angels surrounding the city.
WE LIVE IN CONFLICT - SHORT PRAYERS, BUT ACHIEVING GREAT RESULTS
Throughout the Bible the prayers of men and women of God are like Elisha's: short, but achieving great results. We often pray long prayers but don't achieve a great deal.
In the New Testament we are told that as Christians we live in conflict. The world was meant to be a place of blessing, but instead it has become a place of battle. In the face of sin, sickness, broken relationships and tragedy, we realize that things are not as God intended. Spiritual warfare rages all around us.
In his letter to the Ephesians, Paul gives us a marvelous description of our position in Christ: crucified, buried, raised and seated with Him. Then he challenges us to "walk it out"-to live in the light of who we are in Christ. In the last chapter he reminds us, "You are engaged in conflict. You will be challenged. Take the whole armor of God that you may stand against the attacks of the evil one." We need this reminder, not so we become overly conscious of the devil, but to avoid being taken by surprise.
God wants us to be agents of change in this world. Our primary function, at home or at work, is to be agents of change for Jesus, and prayer is the key. As we pray, we allow God to work through us.
PRAYER IS THE KEY TO CHANGE
C.S. Lewis said, "Man is the great amphibian." As Christians we are made to live in two dimensions of reality: the spiritual and the physical. God has given us the capacity to reach into the spiritual realm and bring it to bear upon the material, natural realm. By prayer, you and I can influence God and the world. What a people we are meant to be! We can reach the throne of God, not to satisfy our own wishes, but to allow God to accomplish His will through us. God has provided us with the opportunity to bring about change in any situation by prayer.
Armin Gesswein observed,
The only thing our blessed, risen Lord left behind on planet earth when He ascended to heaven was a little prayer meeting. I couldn't get over it. 'Dear Lord,' I thought, 'I can't believe it! Is that all Don't You have something else? What on earth are You going to accomplish with that little meeting-especially in the city of Jerusalem, where they crucified You?
His reply was swift and sharp. 'What am I going to do with that little prayer meeting? Just read the book of Acts and watch. You'll quickly see what I'm going to do with that little flock. I'm going to change the world with that little prayer meeting. (Founder and director of the Ministers' Prayer Fellowship. This quote is from an article originally appearing in the Alliance Witness magazine.)
Mr. Gesswein goes on to say, "God works in answer to prayer." This truth is difficult to learn and easy to forget.
PRAYER IS ALL, IT NEEDS NO VISA TO ENTER
When we pray we are as close to any situation as we can be. Prayer needs no visa to enter a country, and no government edict or prison wall can keep it out. It knows no limits, no bounds. Satan knows he cannot keep God from responding to our prayers, but he can keep us from praying. Satan's strategy is to neutralize our weapon of prayer.
Jim Graham writes,
No Christian's spiritual life will rise to stay above the level of his or her praying. No church's ultimate effectiveness will rise to stay above the level of its corporate prayer life. No church's corporate prayer life will be greater than the personal prayer life of those who make up its membership. No Christian's prayer life will rise to stay above the level of his or her own personal, regular time of worship with God.
God has given us the opportunity and the responsibility of change the world by prayer.
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HELP THE HURTING, SUPPORT THE LAME! - Lessons from Isaiah | AGENTS OF CHANGE | STRONG DESIRE - A KEY TO RECEIVING GOD'S PROMISE | BLESS THE LORD, O MY SOUL! AND THANK HIM FOREVER! |LIVING FROM THE HEART | THE PROBLEM OF SPIRITUAL PASSIVITY | JACOB - THE MAN WHO BECAME THE PRINCE OF ISRAEL | SOME NEWS OF INTEREST, AND SOME NEWS FOR CONCERN | IN THE MIDDLE OF ANYWHERE BUT SOMEWHERE | HOME PAGE | CONTACT EDITOR
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