O valley, be raised up
O mountain, be made low
This was playing in my head while I was out running today, and I have my reservations about encouraging such words. I’m trying to wrap around what was said by our Savior, when He said that when we tell the mountain to jump to the sea, so it would happen.
Today we remember Pastor Oscar. Two years ago today he went home to be with the Lord. No doubt, we were praying for his healing. We prayed for whatever ailed him to get out, in the name of Jesus. Much like my own Mom spoke numerous times for cancer to leave my own father’s body. Much like she also encouraged my Dad to speak out that He was healed. But here we are, years later, remembering how they eventually passed away.
I’m not saying all this to discourage anyone. But I suppose I bring it up today, because I don’t want us to look at what some people claim are guarantees. I want to remind everyone that we don’t believe in Christ because of His miracles… We came to believe in Him, and we decided to believe in Him, because of His goodness.
So I guess, if I’m to share about prayer and declaration with shades of asking for an improvement of our circumstances, I would start with the verse I ended with yesterday:
For of Him, and through Him, and to Him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen.
The miracles don’t come from our many words. They come from Christ.
The miracles don’t end with the improvement of our circumstances. They end in Christ.
Ah, you know what? I’m probably confusing you more than I’m confusing myself.
I mentioned earlier that I was running. I’ve had to force myself to run as I originally planned – earlier in the morning, and definitely not during noon. It’s not advisable – even if I had a hat, the sun beating down on me was literally draining. But the greater risk was in the rains, which actually started coming right after lunch. But if I find myself at that time, even if it’s drizzling I would push myself, else I would be able to live with myself.
But here’s the thing. Even if I’m enduring the drizzle, if it starts to rain for real, that’s my cue to cut my losses and go home, even if I’m only 1km into my 3km goal. And that’s the same scenario with regards to what I’m talking about. I don’t want to get into it any further for our sake – the rains are getting stronger.
Best to go home to something safe and dry… and for the topic at hand, I will just say that whether we pray out of our own impulse or in full awareness of Christ, let us, in all things, give thanks. Christ’s finished work has guaranteed that He is not only with us, but chooses to be with us – He wants to be with us, and surely is still 100% with us, even if our own prayers are selfish and short-sighted.
Friends, don’t let your trust be in your own words and your own prayers – but in your prayers, let your trust and awareness be on Christ, who (1) made it possible for us to run to the Father in the first place, and (2) IS our literal Source, Provision, Healing, Restoration, Favor, Safety, and, as my Mom was listening to, ALL that we need at any given moment.
And is it so hard to ‘let your trust and awareness be on Christ’ at any given moment? May I propose that we live in thankfulness. It’s in gratitude – intentional until it’s natural – that the entirety of our being is made to remember Christ and His finished work.
See that no one repays anyone evil for evil, but always seek to do good to one another and to everyone. Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Do not quench the Spirit. Do not despise prophecies, but test everything; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil.
1 Thessalonians 5:15-22
All this, and we haven’t even looked at today’s Psalms and Proverbs. What a day.
Actually, before we even go into those daily Scriptures, let me go ahead and recall what we’ve continued to establish since the beginning of this week. Or, rather, let me draw out what I have in memory, and add some bits and pieces.
In this world that desperately needs love,
You couldn’t talk about love without talking about God, and you couldn’t talk about God without talking about love.
You couldn’t talk about God’s love without mentioning Jesus Christ, nor could you talk about Jesus Christ without emphasizing God’s love.
You couldn’t talk about Jesus Christ without awareness of His finished work unto Salvation, nor can you talk about the salvation you have without giving glory to Christ and all He did.
In your talking about the salvation that you have, you shouldn’t be surprised if you find yourself strengthened and/or filled with joy;
and whether you find yourself in the pinnacle of power and the highest extremes of pleasure, or if you are cast down to the most humiliating of weaknesses and the deepest depths of depression, don’t be surprised if the Holy Spirit reminds you of the absolute salvation you have in Christ.
Yesterday I see we spoke on Romans 12:2: “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”
I believe we’ve come to a conclusion, in light of the centrality of Christ as we’ve continued to establish through those statements. That our not being conformed into this world, and our being transformed by the renewing of our minds, does not begin with us. It begins with Christ, whom we are reminded of in every moment by the Holy Spirit, who convicts us of our righteousness, which I believe is a huge part of our salvation.
Just earlier I guess we’ve also come to the conclusion that we shouldn’t be bashing on who has the better prayer, or which proclamations are right or wrong – whatever we speak, and apparently whatever we hear amongst ourselves in the body of Christ – all this begins with Christ. He is the Beginning of All Renewal, as I mentioned – and as Paul wrote, it’s confirmed: of Him, and through Him, and to Him, are all things;
Friends, Christ IS the Beginning and the End.
I see this statement we keep saying again and again… in a more pleasant, clarified light now.
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