Prayer, Patience, and Faith - Prayer, Patience, and Faith Scripture: How long, O Lord, shall I cry, and you will not hear? Shall I cry out to you suffering violence, and you will not save? Why have you shown me iniquity and grievance, to see plundering an
Posted: Sun Oct 06, 2019 5:39 pm Post subject: Prayer, Patience, and Faith
Prayer, Patience, and Faith
How long, O Lord, shall I cry, and you will not hear? Shall I cry out to you suffering violence, and you will not save? Why have you shown me iniquity and grievance, to see plundering and injustice before me? And there is a judgment, but opposition is more powerful.
And the Lord answered me, and said: Write the vision, and make it plain upon tablets: that he that reads it may run over it. For as yet the vision is far off, and it shall appear at the end, and shall not lie: if it make any delay, wait for it: for it shall surely come, and it shall not be slack. Behold, he that is unbelieving, his soul shall not be right in himself: but the just shall live in his faith.
(Habakkuk 1:2-3, 2:2-4)
For which cause I admonish you that you stir up the grace of God which is in you by the imposition of my hands. For God has not given us the spirit of fear: but of power and of love and of sobriety. Be not, therefore, ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but labor with the gospel, according to the power of God.
Hold the form of sound words which you have heard of me: in faith and in the love which is in Christ Jesus. Keep the good thing committed to your trust by the Holy Spirit who dwells in us.
(2 Timothy 1:6-8, 13-14)
And the apostles said to the Lord: Increase our faith. And the Lord said: If you had faith like to a grain of mustard seed, you might say to this mulberry tree: Be rooted up and be transplanted into the sea. And it would obey you. But which of you, having a servant plowing or feeding cattle, will say to him, when he is come from the field: Immediately go. Sit down to eat. And will not rather say to him: Make ready my supper and gird yourself and serve me, while I eat and drink; and afterwards you shall eat and drink? Does he thank that servant for doing the things which he commanded him? I think not. So you also, when you shall have done all these things that are commanded you, say: We are unprofitable servants; we have done that which we ought to do.
When God created man and woman, the relationship between Creator and the children of His creation was put in motion. God has spoken to many throughout the generations, but as the generations continue, fewer and fewer hear His Word within their ears and fewer still search within their hearts for the ways He guides us. Like small children, we lift up our wants with the expectation that the answer of the Lord will be immediate. Instantly, we want our desires. Our patience is not for His plan or His time. We lift up our will, but when do we inquire as to His?
The evil one would have us believe that if we do not observe an immediate answer to our prayers that God does not care or that He has abandon us. We only see the moment and our wants, but we do not see as God sees, for He sees across all of heaven and earth and across the time of all generations. He sees the consequences we do not observe as well as how each moment of what is done and is not done ripples through lives.
Our aspirations and desires are derived from what we learn, but what will come from that which we have yet to grasp? How might that influence what we choose and do not choose? As we consider the decisions before us, do we consider what will come in the time which follows our worldly experiences? Do we consider what ripples from our decisions and their impacts not only on our future, but also that of others? Do we consider what transcends from this world to the world to come? Can we imagine the difference we might find in our choices if we also considered how their outcome will influence each following day and moment; perhaps for generations to come?
As we lift up our cries to the Lord and expect His immediate attention, do we consider our openness to Him? Do we consider our answer to His commandments? As we lift up our cries to the Lord, should we not expect that He might have questions of us; questions perhaps as to the true intent within our hearts, our commitment, and our willingness to help accomplish His will?
As we lift up our cries to the Lord, we have our solutions in mind. As events unfold contrary to our expectations, are we tempted to believe He does not hear us or does not care, or do we trust that whatever God allows is for a greater good to come? As we lift up our petitions, do we also consider what God desires from us so that we might work in alignment with His will? When we ask for His help, do we also ask that He guide in what we might do to assist the outcome for which we ask? When we consider what we are willing to give to God, do we consider what He offers and what He has already given to us?
Though words matter, the strength of our faith is demonstrated less by what we say than by what we do. Though we may offer up our love in prayer, do we also express our love for our Lord and Savior through our efforts to help accomplish His plan? If we truly desire to demonstrate our love for our Lord, then, as we lift up our prayers, let us also remember to listen within our hearts and allow Him to guide us to our opportunities to help accomplish His will. We may never know, we may be the one God sends to answer the prayers of another.
Questions for further reflection:
In what ways do we observe the Lord's answers to our prayers?
What power has God placed in the hands of the children of His creation?
In what ways do we seek the increase of our faith?
May the peace and blessings of the Lord be with you always,
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