Are you not grateful that in these troubled times, these days of uncertainty, God, your God, the immortal and all-wise God is a prominent feature in your life?
Are you not happy that in these times of change, the one who never changes is a permanent feature of your life?
Are you not relieved that whatever you may face in your personal life, or as a citizen of this troubled world, there is someone to whom you can turn with absolute confidence, knowing that whatever life throws at you (the good, the bad, the downright devastating and ugly), God is in control and he can cause all things to work together for your good, your benefit, your welfare?
I have had thoughts like these over recent years when facing sickness, opposition, family discord, job uncertainty—and I can confidently declare that God has come through for me and my loved ones, again and again, and again!
There is no doubt in my mind that we serve an awesome God, a God who is a very present help in the time of trouble, a God who is not deaf towards our pleas for help or reassurance, a God who makes all things beautiful in our lives, within his timing (Ecclesiastes 3:11).
But what of those who don’t have this? What of those who don’t know where or to whom they may turn? Who even if they seek assistance from the arm of flesh in the way of counsellors, family and loved ones, hypnotists, psychiatrists and psychics, they soon discover these to be inadequate, insufficiently robust, indeed lacking the required omniscience to be able to offer lasting solutions, permanent inner peace, or suitable and specific direction?
What of those who do not know God? Who may have heard about him but denied him, dismissed him, even dissed him?
What of those who have been caught up in a diabolical maelstrom of disbelief or unbelief, of deception, cynicism and scepticism?
This weekend I read a passage taken from UCB Word for Today* (a devotional resource, which I highly recommend!), which touched and grieved my heart.
I felt compassion for those who for whatever reason have rejected God, but at the same time I felt grieved over the influence of the Enemy within their hearts, who keeps them from recognising and reaching out for the very thing that could transform their lives and grant them the security, peace and confidence their heart so craves.
The passage of which I speak, runs as follows:
Writer and editorialist W. O. Saunders said in American Magazine: ‘I’d like to introduce you to one of the loneliest and unhappiest individuals on earth… the man who doesn’t believe in God. I can introduce you to such a man because I myself am one, and in introducing myself you shall have an introduction to the agnostic or sceptic in your own neighbourhood, for he is everywhere in the land. You’ll be surprised to know that the agnostic envies your faith in God, your settled belief in a heaven after life, and your blessed assurance that you’ll meet with your loved ones in an afterlife where there’ll be neither sadness nor pain. He’d give anything to be able to embrace that faith and be comforted by it, but for him there is only the grave and the persistence of matter. After the grave all he can see is the disintegration of the protoplasm and psychoplasm of which my body and personality are composed, but in this materialistic view, I find neither ecstasy nor happiness… He may put on a brave front but he isn’t happy… He sometimes yearns for a staff to lean on. He, too, carries a cross. For him, this earth is but a tricky raft adrift in the unfathomable waters of eternity with no horizon in sight. His heart aches for every precious life upon the raft – drifting, drifting, drifting, whither no one knows.’
Dear reader, what a position to be in. Does your heart not go out to him and others like him?
Do you appreciate the fact that if it were not for the grace of God, we would have remained in a similar situation regarding unbelief, we would have shared a similar fate regarding the inability to accept God’s free gift of salvation?
Oh dear believer in Christ, dear women of warfare, may the compassion of God grip your heart for the hopelessness and helplessness of those such as the man in the passage above.
Let us pray.
This Week’s Prayer Focus:
Can we turn our hearts this week towards those individuals within the circle of our influence, who are like the man that speaks in the passage above? Let’s turn our hearts in compassion towards those who are lost, who do not know God, who are seeking resolutions to seemingly insurmountable problems, who long for peace of mind, who require sound direction for their lives.
(And please, do remember to protect yourselves by putting on your spiritual armour before entering the battlefield of prayer!)
Your Word declares that it is not your intention for anyone to perish. It also tells me that whomsoever wills, yea whomsoever believes, may come to you through Christ and experience the benefits of salvation—forgiveness, restoration, peace and wholeness.
I want to lift up towards you those within the circle of our influence who feel that the gospel is foolishness, who believe that death is the end and the idea of heaven and hell is ridiculous, who scoff at the notion of eternal life or eternal damnation.
Father God, I know that such individuals have been deceived by the lying influence of Satan. I am also aware that it is only through your goodness and mercy that men will be drawn to a place of godly sorrow and true repentance.
Father God, let not the evil will of the Enemy prevail within and against the lives of such men, women and youths. I ask that you turn their hearts away from unbelief, cynicism and scepticism. I ask that you draw such men, women and youths toward you with your gentle cords of love. I ask that you cause the glorious light of your gospel to illuminate their minds, hearts and understanding. Have mercy dear Lord upon those who are honestly seeking the truth and deliver them from sin, selfishness and spiritual blindness.
Holy Spirit, hover over their lives. Bring clarity, order and light where there is confusion, chaos and darkness. Soften those hearts. Remove any spiritual calluses caused by self-sufficiency, intellectualism, worldly knowledge and experience. Break down those barriers erected through stubborn and rebellious attitudes. And to those who respond in genuine humility to your salvation call, I ask that you minister assurance and hope as they take their place amongst their fellow-heirs of salvation. Envelop and keep them within the safety of your abiding presence.
Father God, thank you for hearing our prayers and granting our requests, which we ask in faith and in the matchless, mighty name of your son, Jesus. Amen.
© Carol Hind
***** ***** *****
Sunday’s Supplications invites you to not only read the posts but also participate in the prayers. Each week, I hope to introduce a new theme and prayer focus. You are welcome to print off and use each prayer provided, either verbatim or adapted for your particular circumstance. Even better, you can construct your own prayer and share with others by linking to this post. Please note, you do not have to be a blogger to participate.
***** ***** *****
Women of Warfare followers and visitors, throughout this coming week may you experience in an increasing measure, the compassion of God and an unshakeable confidence in him.
*Free postal copies of UCB Word For Today (UK and Republic of Ireland only) are available from: FREEPOST RLTX-ABUL-GRAR, United Christian Broadcasters, Westport Road, Stoke-on-Trent, ST6 4JF
For the online version visit here
CREDIT: the above CC0 image comes courtesy of Pixabay.com