My head had a different blog planned for tonight. I had it halfway written and hadn’t even touched the keyboard. I just knew that’s what I was going to write and was so glad it was just…there. Then, life happened. I’ve been praying about several touchy situations in the last couple of days. You know, those situations that have no easy answer. I felt pretty helpless in them. I even thought the dreaded, “All I can do is pray.” And then I laughed.
You see, my dear friend Michelle used to get quite bothered by that statement, “all I can do is pray.” She would exclaim, “That’s the MOST powerful thing we can do as Christians!” Her theory was that if all you could do is pray, then you had the most powerful weapon at your fingertips and it was all good! And, I agree. So, I’m here to convince you that she was right.
When Jesus died on the cross, He died for our sins. (Yes, I know. We all know that.) But, something else incredible happened then too. Matthew, Mark and Luke all recorded that the veil of the temple was torn from top to bottom. (Matt 27:51, Mark 15:38, Luke 23:45) Nice, huh?
Wait. Do you understand what that means and why it matters? If so, good! You’re done here. Go pray. If not, hang on, I’m going to give you the Leigh Pack explanation. (For a more scholarly explanation, ask your pastor or google it! Or, read about it in the Bible.)
In the Old Testament, before Jesus came to hang out with us human folks, the temple was set up exactly the way God wanted it. David wanted to build the temple. God said thanks but I’m going to have your son do it. Solomon built the temple according to exact instructions. The “holy of holies” was where the presence of God could be found. No one was allowed there, except the high priest and that was once a year. The person who went in had to be sinless. They would tie a rope around the high priest’s foot in case he was struck dead for going in with sin. It was serious stuff. The veil that covered the holy of holies was about four inches thick and sixty feet (or so) high. So, no man could rip it. Yet, when Jesus died, it was torn. From the top. The point is that now, man could go before God Himself, with Jesus as intercessor. No longer do we have to count on a sinless high priest once a year.
Think about it. The Most Holy God. The Creator. The Alpha and Omega. Our Provider. Protector. (can I stop there? I could go on…) We can approach our Lord ourselves! We can talk to Him. And He hears us! Now, that gets me pretty excited! I’m so glad I live in New Testament times and not Old Testament times. But, in case you’re still doubting me, I found a few more scriptures that talk about the power of prayer. Because, not only does He hear us, He answers! Wow. Check these out:
Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. Mark 11:24
The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. James 5:16b
And we will receive from him whatever we ask because we obey him and do the things that please him. 1 John 3:22 NLT
This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him. 1 John 5:14-15
If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. John 15:7
And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it. John 14:13-14
Jesus replied, “Truly I tell you, if you have faith and do not doubt, not only can you do what was done to the fig tree, but also you can say to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and it will be done. If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.” Matthew 21:21-22
Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. Luke 11:9
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7
“This kind can come out only by prayer.” Mark 9:29
Did you read all those? Do you see how powerful prayer really is? There’s one more scripture I want to use. Philippians 4:6-7 says, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Michelle always said peace is God’s road sign.
So. Got problems? Yep, I’m sure you do. Know Jesus? I hope so. Now, all you have to do is pray. God will answer your prayer perfectly, in His own time. And you will have one more testimony to add to your collection!
Be blessed and tell someone you love them.
Oh…and all the scripture came from the NIV, unless otherwise noted.