Greetings dear family of our beloved Saviour, Jesus Christ, let us come together once more, as a family, to celebrate God’s steadfast love, to rejoice in His all sufficient grace, and to exalt His wondrous glory. Amen
Some years ago I had to go into hospital for a biopsy on two lumps that had appeared around my neck (it turned out they were only harmless fatty lumps). As always, it was the journey I was most worried about and also the stay in hospital with the noise etc. (for those who don’t know me I had M.E./C.F.S at this time and was bed bound for many years) I asked for prayer from the M.E. Family (My prayer fellowship) and everything went well, so it was marvelous. I came away feeling great because God had kept me so close and safe, but things don’t always go that well and sometimes prayer seem to go unanswered.
About a month later, I had to go in to hospital again to see the specialist and I prayed that God would give me the strength to get through it all. I was taken in by ambulance, saw the specialist and then was left to wait for an eternity for an ambulance to take me home again, whilst I got weaker and weaker with my CFS. Once the ambulance arrived I thought the worst would be over but we came out into 5.00 pm winter traffic on a dark rainy night and every road was blocked. Whilst I lay in the ambulance feeling worse by the minute, and panicking like mad, I kept praying for God to speed things up and get me home before all my energy was lost, but no, we hit every red light in the city and the 5 minute journey took nearly an hour.
When we finally arrived home I rushed for the stair-lift to carry me to my bed, and as I fell into my bed I cried out “O Lord why was that such a nightmare? Why did you not help me?” Now I did not hear a voice, but I had the strongest interior impression that I have ever had – like a bolt out of the blue, I seemed to understand God saying to me: “Did I not get you home in one piece – and would your energy not have been better if you had trusted Me and not got so stressed, afraid and angry?” It was true, I realised that God had answered my prayer: to get me home before my energy went, and that all my discomfort was simply my lack of faith!
When a drowning man is being rescued, the greatest danger often comes from his own panic filled struggle. Instead of allowing himself to be rescued, his instinct is to keep struggling, causing danger to himself and hindering the work of the one who is trying to save him. The person being rescued simply has to relax and let the professional lifesaver take care of him. Jesus is our lifesaver He says to us “come to Me all you who are heavy laden and I will give you rest.” In the ambulance I should have allowed Jesus to rescue me, I should have relaxed and placed my burden upon the Lord and trusted Him to get me home. His words to me when I got home taught me a valuable lesson that day and I felt very ashamed at my lack of faith.
God cannot fail us, we simply have to put our trust in Him; He is always with us, always attentive to our prayers.
We don’t need to shout for Him to hear us. We don’t need to rattle off countless words for Him to take notice of us. His power is infinite and whatever we ask in prayer will be done for us according to His will. And so we may fear the trial, we may not want to go through what lies ahead, but we can have confidence that we will not be overcome – this is His promise! It is truly impossible for God to fail us – how could He fail us if He is always present and His power is limitless? The only limitations that God has are those that we place upon Him! God’s grace has always been sufficient and it always will be!
I have called you by name, you are mine. When you pass through the waters I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through the fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you. For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Saviour. (Isaiah 43:1-3)