Psalm 87:6-7 “Give ear, O Lord, to my prayer; And attend to the voice of my supplications. In the day of my trouble I will call upon You, For You will answer me.”
I had what I suppose was a thought straight from the pit – God may not hear and answer my prayers, but I trust that others more godly than I have God’s attention. This negative thought came on the heels of praying for the return of my granddaughter’s stolen car. I prayed, yet when a friend agreed to have her prayer group pray, and the car turned up in an alley the next morning (nothing broken, nothing stolen), I heard myself thanking God that He answered the prayers of my friend. Not that thanking God for answering others is inappropriate, just that in that moment I realized that I thought God answering my prayers seemed remote.
Back in the 80’s, we were called prayer warriors. My Christian sisters and I would meet weekly to pray for the hurting, the ill, the dying. We visited hospitals and held the hands of the weak; we prophesied over the despondent who came to the altar for prayer. We lifted up our husbands, our children, our military, our country to the only true God for peace and prosperity and mercy. We worked tirelessly because the Spirit of the living God was upon us. Isaiah 32:12, 15, 17 says, “People shall mourn upon their breasts…Until the Spirit is poured upon us from on high…The work of righteousness will be peace, And the effect of righteousness, quietness and assurance forever.” This was, for me, a remarkable time of trusting in God. I had long since shed complacency in the world, and trusting its empty promises.
The recent moment of self-doubt, however was a wake-up call. Thankfully, I know how to challenge unwanted, negative interruptions in my thought life. Crowd them out with Scripture! And keep praying and praising! We have a great God who listens to each prayer. Deuteronomy 4:7 “For what great nation is there that has God so near to it, as the Lord our God is to us, for whatever reason we may call upon Him?” [Italics mine.] I repeat this phrase over and over, “…for whatever reason we may call upon Him.” We are called to trust in God’s intimate knowledge of our condition and need of His Spirit:
Revelation 2:7, 11, 17, 26, 27 “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes I will give…” 1) to eat from the tree of life; 2) shall not be hurt by the second death; 3) hidden manna to eat and a new name written on a white stone [that only God knows]; 4) power over the nations [to rule with Christ] and the morning star [Christ our Lord].
So I pray, “Rejoice the soul of Your servant, For to You, O Lord, I lift up my soul,” Psalm 86:4. You hear my simple prayers of faith and assure me of Your presence from start to finish. I thank You, Lord Jesus Christ, that You listen for and lovingly answer even my prayers.
All Scripture and commentary quotes from: The Nelson Study Bible, New King James Version, Trinity Fellowship Church 25th Anniversary Commemorative Edition, 2002.