Now Playing: The Uncomfortable Pastor
Sometimes I daydream or night-dream about preaching again (though I am really quite happy in my current role). If it is in a substitute role, I wonder what biblical passage I should choose. There is this one, and there is that one. What do the people need? Does it matter which one I choose? Have I ever preached on a passage and afterward seen the hearers impacted the way I wished? There is a mixture of thoughts and memories that come forward out of the closets of the mind that can encourage one trip or another.
Yet the Lord has wired me a certain way. Maybe we could say that the Lord gifted me specifically. In quizzing others, it has become obvious that not everyone thinks the way I think. That’s pretty obvious in numerous ways, but what I mean is this: when I learn a new song I immediately want to share it, sing it for others. The message of the song and the beauty of the song others should experience, too, and sometimes I can make that happen.
The same is true in Bible study. Right now I am still engaged in a personal inductive study of Isaiah, and at this rate it may continue for more than another year. Detailed exposure to a single verse can excite me, and I would love to share that with others. I suppose I would like the verse to impact others as it impacts me, but regardless of whether it ever will I still have the urge to share it.
In this same connection I have wondered about the impact of prayers. For years it seemed to me that God answered my prayers for my personal needs and wants, but not so much my prayers for others. Yet I have also seen some prayers answered in the lives of others, some strikingly so after many years of praying. And that encourages me. But God’s word encourages me even more; Jesus was the greatest promoter of prayer.
Some requests have been granted in the way I hoped. Some of have been answered in a way shockingly different than I expected. Others seem to be on hold.
Actually, I have to believe, from what Jesus said about prayer, that more of my prayers have been answered than I now know. Some of the answers I have seen. Some of the answers I may never see, but the fact of asking was pleasing to the Father. And some of my requests will be taken into account when pouring out the judgments promised in Revelation, even if I had hoped for an answer of grace sooner rather than of judgment later.
Doing is important. In fact, Jesus said that doing the Father’s will was critical. And it has been revealed to all, even written. But sometimes there is nothing you can do, and, I suppose, especially in a time like that a person turns to God in prayer.
The Bible does mention waiting for God. Life often involves waiting for Him. I suspect prayer is often waiting for Him. Just waiting, to see what He will do. Not demanding, just waiting.
Just a few ramblings while I wait...