“This is what the LORD says, he who made the earth, the LORD who formed it and established it—the LORD is his name: ‘Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.’” – Jeremiah 33:2-3
You can ask other people all you want, but if you really want to know, you have to go to the source.
When we bought our first home, we wondered why it was set up the way that it was. Why were the light switches in that place, and why was the door to the backyard set up that way? When we finally met the home builder, who happened to be a member of our church, we asked him, and he explained everything we needed to know. He also gave us some tips for maintenance that really made our homeowner lives much easier.
We can guess all we want about why things on the earth are the way they are, but if we really want to know, the Lord invites us to ask him. He is the one who made the earth, who set it up to work the way it does. The maker of heaven and earth has introduced himself to us in the Holy Scriptures, and he invites us to read them for answers to our many questions.
When we read the Bible, we find out that the Lord who made the earth has introduced himself to us in a special way – in the person of Jesus Christ. We ask certain questions, but Jesus answers them with things that we don’t even think to ask, great and unsearchable things that we do not know.
Why does God allow people to be born sinful? He has bound all people over to disobedience so that he might have mercy on them all! Jesus lived, died, and rose again to show mercy and earn forgiveness of sins for every person on the earth. How can God’s love be that great? It is what the Lord says, and now, amazingly, you have the privilege of knowing and believing that truth.
Prayer: We call to you, O Lord. Answer us and make us happy with the great things you have done for us in Jesus Christ. Amen.
We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, because we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love you have for all the saints – the faith and love that spring from the hope that is stored up for you in heaven and that you have already heard about in the word of truth, the gospel that has come to you. – Colossians 1:3-6
How is your prayer life? Is it regular and intentional? Certainly there are mealtime prayers and bedtime prayers. Some people have a list of names that they pray through each day. When natural disasters hit or tragedy strikes, the volume of prayers probably increases.
With these opening words of the letter to the Colossians, we have a look into the prayer life of the Apostle Paul. He always gave thanks to God when he prayed for those believers. He gave thanks to God because of what God was doing among them through the gospel. The Word was being faithfully proclaimed and people were hearing it and believing it. Their faith in God’s promises and love for God’s people was evident.
What was encouraging these believers all the more was the sure and certain hope they had for eternal life in heaven. They knew of the riches of heaven that God had in store for them.
It is easy to allow our prayers to become driven by the here and now, the immediate circumstances around us. However, when we remember and think about the eternal riches of heaven, it helps to keep things in perspective when we pray. Sure a big storm may hit, but it passes. Heaven is eternal. A sickness may beset us for a few days, a few weeks or perhaps for the rest of our lives. Yet how short is that, compared to the eternal bliss of heaven!
So, keep up the prayers. God loves to hear them. Keep a heavenly perspective as you pray for God’s kingdom and God’s people. And certainly also give thanks to God for the gospel which is spreading to more and more people. In doing so you are letting your light and faith shine – to God’s glory.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I thank you for hearing my prayers. Help me to come to you more and more regularly for you invite me to pray continually. Continue to bless the spread of the gospel so that more people may know the blessings of heaven that are ours through faith in Christ Jesus. Amen.
Elijah replied, “I have been very zealous for the LORD God Almighty. The Israelites have rejected your covenant, broken down your altars, and put your prophets to death with the sword. I am the only one left, and now they are trying to kill me too.” The LORD said to him, “Go back the way you came, and go to the Desert of Damascus. When you get there, anoint Hazael king over Aram. Also, anoint Jehu son of Nimshi king over Israel, and anoint Elisha son of Shaphat from Abel Meholah to succeed you as prophet. Jehu will put to death any who escape the sword of Hazael, and Elisha will put to death any who escape the sword of Jehu. Yet I reserve seven thousand in Israel – all whose knees have not bowed down to Baal and all whose mouths have not kissed him.” – Jeremiah 19:14-19
“It’s for your own good.” When I heard those words from my parents I knew that the medicine or the thing I had to do was not going to pleasant. It wasn’t going to be a good experience. In her book, Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, Judith Viorst describes a young boy who was having a bad day. She opens by writing, “Alexander knew it was going to be a terrible day when he woke up with gum in his hair. And it got worse…” That’s how I picture Elijah, talking with the Lord. He tried to do what was right. He tried to follow God’s will for his life. Yet, nothing seemed to go his way. Nothing he did seemed to work.
Have you ever felt frustrated with life like Elijah? Have you ever had one of those “terrible, horrible, no good, very bad days?” I’m sure you have, since we all do. On those days, we’re tempted to question God. On those days, we’re tempted to wonder if God cares about us. We wonder if God is really in control. If he is, then why are all these bad things happening when I’m trying my best to do what is right?
Elijah felt this way. So God reminded him that he’s always in control. He gave Elijah a list of things to do that would demonstrate God’s control. God showed Elijah that though it seemed like the wicked were winning, there were still true and faithful believers in Israel. The wicked would not win in the end.
God does the same for you and me. He points us back into his Word to remind us how he guides all things for our good. He reminds us how he worked all things, even the events in the life of Elijah, so that his Son, our Savior Jesus, would come at just the right time, in just the right place, so he could live and die and rise for you and me. And if God can work all things for such an important promise as that, then he’ll certainly keep all of his promises to us.
Prayer: Savior God, ever remind us of your loving care and guidance in our lives, especially on our worst days. Amen.