I was scrolling through my Facebook feed the other day when I came across a fairly simple, yet rarely asked question. “Can I pray for you?” I admit I was a bit taken aback. Do you mean that someone has willingly asked to intercede with the Father on my behalf without me asking them to do so? And, it wasn’t just me. One look in the comments section and by then seven other people had submitted their requests. I was encouraged, inspired, and, admittedly, a bit saddened. While prayer is the most powerful tool at the disposal of any disciple of Jesus Christ, it is often times the least used in our daily lives.
As followers of Christ, we get to see the world through a completely different lens. There are ordinary things that happen every day to people that, through spiritual eyes, are not so ordinary. And while we don’t always know how God is working, we know that He is working on our behalf. So daily we submit our will to His and give Him the reigns of our lives. Unfortunately, fear sometimes creeps in and, rather than fall on our knees, we forget God is with us and often try to retake control.
Have you ever done that? You start out your day in prayer. You ask God to guide your day. You pray for His wisdom and discernment. You ask for his protection. You ask Him to help you meet the needs of others. You tell Him that you love Him and trust in His amazing power. And you pray it all in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Then, when you get in your car to head out to work, the car won’t start. At first, you’re pretty cool about it. You get out and pop the hood to see what could be going on. You can’t quite figure it out so you decide to just take a taxi to work and get to it later…except there are very few taxis in sight and none of them are stopping for you. So you decide to take a bus.
Finally, the bus that goes right by your building pulls up and you get on it. But it’s packed so you have to stand up. The passenger next to you has a cup of coffee that accidentally spills on your very clean outfit. And all of a sudden, panic starts to set in because today is the day you are giving an important presentation at work.
From that moment, all you can see is the coffee stain. You can’t see the lady sitting near you whose eyes are swollen from crying. You can’t see the man sitting next to her who looks like he hasn’t seen a shower in days. You can’t hear the baby crying behind you whose mother has fallen asleep from exhaustion. You can’t see the two teen girls bullying the young lady in the seat in front of them. You don’t see any of it because prayer and God’s amazing power has become a long forgotten option.
Rather, you’re thinking of how crappy you will look in front of all those people at work. What’s going to happen if you can’t get your car fixed? With all this traffic, will you even make it to work on time? Are all of the presentation materials on your desk? Maybe you should call your assistant. Wait, where’s your mobile phone? Oh no, you left it in your car!
And then, you feel a tap on your shoulder. Beside you is an elderly woman with questioning eyes. “Excuse me,” she says. “Can I pray for you?” As you stare at her with a look of utter hopelessness and confusion, she asks you again, “Can I pray for you?”
You slowly nod your head yes. She takes your hand firmly in hers and silently her lips begin to move. You don’t know what she’s saying. You just know what you’re feeling…comfort, relief, gratitude. She releases your hand and gets off at the next bus stop. You were barely able to tell her thank you when you feel your mobile phone buzz in your pocket. It’s your assistant. She wanted to make sure you were okay because there was a major car accident on the motorway you take every day to work.
The rest of the bus ride to work is a blur. As you stand silently on the bus, your mind and your eyes now open to the needs around you, you leave your cares up to God and begin praying for the world.
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