Saturday, October 25, 2008

When We Can't Pray

"Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose." (Ro.8:26-28, NKJV)

Has there ever been a time when you just felt a great urge to pray, but didn't know how to express it, or as strange as it may sound, what to even express? I can remember a few times, when I just lifted up a grunt, or groan toward the Lord, because the pain & confusion was just too heavy & thick to say anything. I have a strong suspicion that I am not the only one. Well, one of the many benefits (Ps.103:1-5) of being a child of God is that this is enough, when we just cannot express our prayer needs. Our Father knows our needs, & our hearts. He also knows how to supply those needs in such a way that we'll receive them.
I used to think that verse 28 was a new thought after the verses before it, but they are perfectly interrelated! God knows that sometimes it is only severe trials & testings that will get us on our knees so to speak, & it is then that He can use those hard things He lovingly allows into our lives to all work together for good! Not that they are good, but they work together for our good!
Notice however this only works for those called by Him & who love Him. This of course are His children in fellowship with Him! All can be His children if they'll just trust in Christ as Savior, then this magnificent promise is good for you as well! I trust the Lord will use His precious Word in your life today!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Our Brother..........

"Gaius, who is host to me and to the whole church here, greets you. So do Erastus, the city treasurer, and our brother Quartus." (Rom.16:23, Amplified Bible).

Paul was naming some special people God had used in his life in this tremendous final chapter of Romans, & he had said something specific about just about all of them, & then comes this man, Quartus. As far as I know, he is only mentioned this one time in all the Bible. The KJV simply says of him, "...& Quartus a brother." Some other translations of the Scriptures have Paul saying of him, "...Quartus the brother..." & the like. I am probably making far more out of this than is actually in the text, but something really neat just seems to be in Paul's mind as he mentions this brother in the Lord. Under divine inspiration, he doubtless had a good reason to include Quartus in this special list, & also to describe him in such simply sublime terms. I envision a humble believer who was just there for you if you had a need, & was so in tune with his Savior that he just radiated the joy of the Lord. I may be way off-base, but I don't think so. Paul had made the amazing yet true statement that without a single automobile or Internet or airplane, the Gospel had spread all over the then-known world! (see Col.1:23b) No doubt it was through the Spirit of Christ working through quiet, unassuming brothers & sisters who gladly presented their entire beings to the One who died for them & rose again. Oh, brothers & sisters, I'd like to be a brother like ol' Quartus, wouldn't you?

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Psalm 27:8

"When Thou saidst, Seek ye My face; my heart said unto Thee, Thy face, LORD, will I seek."

What a precious text of Scripture! Certainly this reveals the intimate & loving communion between a believer abiding in fellowship with the Lord & the Lord Himself. This entire Psalm, as so many in the Psalter, reveals this beautiful closeness that the Lord so desires from us.
You know, I was looking over the Book of Acts this week, & a great Bible teacher now with the Lord, Dr. G. Campbell Morgan, made a tremendous point in connection with the conversion of Saul of Tarsus, & the Lord's faithful disciple, Ananias (not Sapphira's infamous husband!). As the Lord directed Ananias to go & lay hands on the freshly converted Saul, Ananias understandably balked at first! His response is almost funny! "Lord! Don't You know all the bad things this fellow has done, & that he came here to keep on doing those awful things..." Certainly this is a very rough paraphrase, but the point is clear! Ananias felt comfortable being very open & candid with the Lord, obviously something he was in the habit of doing. Dr. Morgan pointed out that the supernatural simply seemed natural to these early believers! The point is, that they were completely at home with the Lord! The reverse was also true...He was at home in their hearts & lives as well! Isn't that what Paul meant when he said what he did in Ephesians 3:17? Listen to the Amplified version of that text: "May Christ through your faith [actually] dwell (settle down, abide, make His permanent home) in your hearts! May you be rooted deep in love and founded securely on love..." Now we know that once we trust in Christ for eternal life, that positionally we are in Him forever, but in our everyday lives, the Lord wants to do what Paul said in Ephesians 3:17, & what He was doing in Ananias' heart in Acts 9! The Lord desires much more than we do, even at our best moments, to be in intimate, close fellowship with us! This is encouraging, yet also sobering, to think how many times I have left my wonderful Savior desiring much closer fellowship with me while I went off to do some pointless thing in light of eternity...
Anyway, I'm not really sure what my reaon for posting this was, but I do know that we as believers can be as close to the Lord as we want to be, since He has made every effort & put everything in place for it to be so! Let's be like David when he said, "When Thou saidst, Seek ye My face; my heart said unto Thee, Thy face, LORD, will I seek." May the Lord bless you all!