By Patrick Hawthorne
In The Road to Zion part 1, I referenced Hebrews 12:22-24, discussing that when we pray – pray in faith that is – we come in spirit before the audience of Almighty God in the presence of an innumerable company on angels and a host of witnesses. We don’t have to throw up shot gun prayers hoping one will stick. We don’t have to think, “Maybe God will hear me if I whine a little or beg a little.” Or, “Maybe if I repeat the same prayer over and over again, He might take notice of me.”
Unbeknownst to me, at the same time I was writing my article, a blogger friend, Pastor Jim at Domain for Truth, ( https://veritasdomain.wordpress.com/ ) , was writing an article on prayer in which he reviewed a small book by Charles Spurgeon entitled, The Secret of Power in Prayer. Isn’t it wonderful how our Holy Spirit works.
Although there were many wonderful nuggets of truth by Mr. Spurgeon, a few nuggets in particular jumped off the pages.
“The best praying man is the man who is most believingly familiar with the promises of God. After all, prayer is nothing but taking God’s promises to him, and saying to him, “Do as thou hast said.””
Sadly, this is where so many in the Christian community, who call Jesus their Lord and Savior, miss the mark. To them, Jesus is their Savior and that is where it ends. They have a great faith to believe that Almighty God wants to deliver man from the bondage of sin and death, but have very little faith to believe beyond that. Consider these next words by Mr. Spurgeon.
“Behold, the great Father treats us in our measure as he treats his Firstborn. Jesus could say, “I know that thou hearest me always”; and the Lord is educating us to the selfsame assurance. We can say with one of old, “My God will hear me”
If what Mr. Spurgeon wrote is true, which I believe it is, then we can come before the Father with the same assurance that Jesus had. We too can say, “God will hear me.” And…if God hears me as He does Jesus, why can’t I stretch my faith to believe for that miracle? Why can’t I say, “Lord, do it again as You did for Jesus.”
Ah, but here is where we miss it so often. We want, we ask, we desire…yet, we do not receive. Why? Because we fail to realize that the Vine (Jesus) desires for us to be as much a part of His life as we expect Him to be a part of our life. In truth, we don’t allow the power of His life to flow into us. Sure, we say we do but are we being honest with ourselves?
The reality is that Jesus is the Living Vine but so many of us have become the malnourished branches. It is not because the Vine has stopped the flow, but it is us who has blocked the flow of His power in us and through us. (See John chapter 15: 1-11.) Again, the words of Mr. Spurgeon.
“But abiding in the Lord Jesus does not only mean trusting in him; it includes our yielding ourselves up to him to receive his life, and to let that life work out its results in us. We live in him, by him, for him, to him, when we abide in him.”
The Road to Zion begins in our hearts. Don’t allow the confines of religious doctrine to blind you to the truth of God’s Word. If you don’t understand a portion of the Word, first believe it to be the truth and then ask God to open up your understanding – not the other way around. The same God that operated through Jesus and then the disciples is still the same God Who wants to operate through you. Be blessed.