Out of the Abundance of the Heart

Friday, October 13, 2017

Building People of Substance for Works of Power

Pray without ceasing, Friend.

We live in a truly remarkable time. Day after day the news is filled with horrors: weather events, mass shootings, wildfires, the threat of nuclear war, the opioid epidemic, etc. This morning I read that a volcano in Yellowstone Park may destroy all mankind! It’s a bit much for anyone to process. And thanks to the internet, we hear about things when they happen, even if they didn’t really happen! As a Christian, my first impulse is to pray. Pray for those in harm’s way, pray for the victims, pray for the first responders, and even pray for those who perpetrate atrocities. One theologian’s blog expressed a kind of “compassion fatigue” when it comes to praying. We have prayed so much for so many, we are asking, “how do we pray, does it do any good?” Well, yes and no.

Herein lies the rub. In any given large-scale situation, I don’t know what to pray for exactly. The enormity of it all overwhelms my ability to conceive of interventions that might help. I am continually falling back on “Help them, Lord. You are able.” That is not God’s best. I believe the plan of the enemy has been to de-horn the Church by marginalizing the things of the Spirit in favor of self-help Christianity, political activism, and tepid religious form. Our hearts long to “do something,” but we don’t know what. That longing in our heart is God’s prompting to pray, not with human formulas but with the Spirit. His answer to praying when we don’t know how to pray, or even what to pray for, is to pray in the Spirit. That means praying with other tongues. A tongues-free church is a prayer-neutered church. Satan has made every appeal to pride, intellectualism, and political correctness to keep us from praying with power. Let’s not let the thief get away with our stuff.

Somebody Said: Prayer is an act of love; words are not needed. Even if sickness distracts from thoughts, all that is needed is the will to love. Saint Teresa of Avila

Scripture Reading: And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. For example, we don’t know what God wants us to pray for. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words. And the Father who knows all hearts knows what the Spirit is saying, for the Spirit pleads for us believers in harmony with God’s own will. (Romans 8:26-27 NLT)

For those of us who have been filled with the Spirit and now speak with other tongues, this is our time. We have been equipped by God to respond to the groanings of the earth (Romans 8:19-22) with the groanings of our hearts. Don’t be distracted by the uproar around you, but give voice to the Holy Spirit longing within you. Give voice to the yearnings of God! We are not fatigued, we are empowered! Let’s do this!

Pastor Virgil L. Stokes
Faith Christian Fellowship of Tucson
3141 W. Ironwood Hill Dr.
Tucson, AZ 85745
Office: 520-792-3238

Visit us on YouTube to taste the goodness @FCFTucson.

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