I confess that I still get amazed at how quickly and wonderfully God answers my prayers. I know what you are thinking “she is a Pastors wife how can she still be amazed by God?” Your assumption that I should I have the inside scoop on how to pray and get results would be a common thought, but nothing is further from the truth. Pastors and their wives don’t get issued a prayer handbook the day they receive their calling. Unless you count the one and only life handbook that all of us have access to everyday; the Holy word of God, our Bible. Inside those pages you will find many ways to pray, and see the many ways that God has answered His children when they pray. 1 John 5:14 tells us
“This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.”
Personally I have had God answer so many prayers; I wonder how I could still get surprised by seeing them transpire. But that is the wonder of having a God who hears and cares about each one of us, not just his Pastors and their families. He cares about you, and the prayers of your heart. So why is it that we still get so amazed when He shows up in our daily lives? We think “oh yes God spoke and did all types of miracles in Bible times, but that was then; He doesn’t do those kinds of things anymore. That is not true; God has not and will not ever be out of the prayer granting and miracle making business! Sometimes we don’t recognize them even when they are right in front of our faces. We are looking for the grand and loud, but He is the God of the small and intimate too.
One of the jobs that I get to do for my husband is select the Hymns we sing in church. The last week of each month I sit down (Ha, Ha I guess I’m always sitting down) while holding our hymnal I pray for God to inspire my choices. I need 4 hymns for each service, for the whole month. What is amazing is that without knowing what my husband is planning to speak about, the hymns are always perfectly matched to go with them. This small miracle has been happening every month for 3 years, so how is it that I still get shocked? I believe that it’s important that no matter how often or how small our prayers are that get answered; we need to be in awe of it. That God would stop and hear my request that something as simple as a few hymns would line up with a sermon is awe inspiring. What you do need to see is that this prayer lines up with scripture; I am asking that these hymns will bring glory to God and be an inspiration to the congregation that will hear them. Maybe even a reason to go out and share with the world at large what they heard in church this day so that it will bring more sheep to the fold. So I have the confidence to ask this small thing and know that He hears me.
Some of my answered prayers seem like they were just for me, like when I pray for an open handicapped parking spot on a rainy day (I hate to get my hair wet) but all of our answered prayers can be used for the glory of God. So how do I use my parking spot for God’s glory? I tell everyone that God made it possible for me to have it. In Luke 5:26 it says,
“They were all struck with astonishment and began glorifying God; and they were filled with fear, saying “We have seen remarkable things today.”
Did you hear what Luke said? They were astonished and because of that they began to glorify God. No matter how many times God shows up and our prayers get answered we are to be astonished. Whether our miracle is cancer averted or hymns that go with sermons, we need to share with others about our miracles so that together we can praise Him. It’s very clear that we were created for God and for His glory. Isaiah 43:7 reminds us,
“ Everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory, whom I formed and made.”
Because we are His people the sheep of His fold, and it was God who made us; it is only right that we should give God all the glory He is owed. But what does it look like to give God glory? Giving glory to God is as unique to each person as each person is unique to another. I give God glory when I share the words that God puts inside me on this blog. You may give God glory when you share your faith testimony. Someone else may give glory by singing in worship, or in my husband’s case when he teaches Bible study or gives his sermon on Sundays. When we share how God has worked in our lives, is a great way to glorify the power and majesty of God. You still may be saying I don’t have my prayers answered. I want to remind you that God answers all of our prayers, either with Yes, No, or Wait just like we talked about in a previous post. So for the doubting Thomas out there I challenge you to take a long hard look at two things in your life. One, how often do you sit with the Lord in prayer? It is pretty hard to have prayers answered if you’re not praying. Two have you really taken a good look at your life to see the answered prayers?
I have a friend who was feeling very down about her life, I asked her what was making her so depressed. She said I waited all my life for a new home, with an electric furnace instead of a wood stove, and dishwasher so I wouldn’t have to do them by hand, and to be close to friends and shopping so I won’t have so far to drive. I just moved into a great place and now I have all of these things but right after we moved in my husband and I got sick. I feel like God is punishing me for praying for these things and all the joy I felt is gone. You see she was wrong, I told her how blessed she needed to feel. God answered her prayers. He knew when she and her husband were going to need all of these conveniences and put her there at just the right time. So that while they were not feeling well, there would be no need to chop wood and make a fire; clean dishes would always be available without her needing to stand so long, and that friends would be close by to bring not only their company but take her to do shopping. God did all of this for her, and now instead of being sad she needs to be glad and share this story so that God would get all the glory!
What things in your life are you not giving God the glory for? Start today and thank Him, praise His name and the work He does in your life, the grand and the small. Tell everyone you see a friend and a stranger, how He still works miracles each day! Most importantly never stop being amazed.