I believe this is God’s work. And I believe and affirm I cannot do it. This is not a new confession on my part! But why is this idea number 7 in our 10 Days of Purpose? There are many things we are called to believe. Our spiritual lives are based on faith and obedience. One truth we are called to believe is that we must worship God in spirit and truth. To do so means we must recognize the truth of Who He is and the reality of all that we are and aren’t. And that has a great deal to do with Purpose!
I Believe – 2 Conversations
A Dominican pastor was talking with me about prayer. This was several years ago. But his statement and illustration has stuck with me. And I have shared it with mission volunteers on more that one occasion. He said:
Americans have trouble praying because they can write a check. If you get sick you just go to the doctor and the pharmacy and write a check. We can’t do that so we have to pray about everything. If we get sick, we have to pray for healing. And if healing doesn’t come then we have to pray for money to see the doctor. Once we see the doctor we have to pray for money to buy medicine. Prayer is an everyday, way-of-life for us.
That statement was painful, but true. Do I believe in prayer? Absolutely! And I believe in the Almighty Father Who calls us to pray to Him. Do we do it enough? No. I am guilty and must pray for Him to help my unbelief. And it is prayer that helps us recognize that truth about ourselves that we hate to admit: we can’t do anything apart from Him. We must be truthful about our limitations. That reality was a ‘conversation’ in a previous post:
We say this to Him. We acknowledge what He knows, what He wants us to feel. We say I’m not. I can’t. I won’t — we are not God, we’re mere creatures. We can’t make our hearts alive or the sun to rise. We won’t venture out any further, not a step more, without His nearness, without Him being more real to us than anything else in all the world. I’m not. I can’t. I won’t.
He is! He can! He Will! – 10 Days of Purpose
I believe that, too! And my intent is to encourage, instruct, and affirm. Some people have suggested I should do more to keep the needs of ministry in front of everyone. That might be true. But if I believe in the power of prayer then it seems the most obvious need is ask people to pray. That can be helped with appropriate notices, etc. But if those posts and pictures are always about the needs for mission and ministry funding then people can lose sight of the real need: prayer for our Father to further His mission. And His mission is people. And there’s a follow-up…
God’s mission is people. We can easily agree with that. But…God’s method is people. And that’s also easy to say as long as ‘people’ is someone else! God has obligated Himself to respond to the prayers of His children. I can’t fully understand or explain that. It’s just something that Scripture plainly teaches.
It was illustrated in the June session of the Pastor Training School. One pastor raised his hand for what I thought was a question. It turned out to be his own request for prayer. And we stopped to pray for him. At that moment he was the mission and we were God’s method to minister to this pastor.
I Believe – A Conclusion
I am affirming for you my belief that the utmost need we have going forward is prayer. That does NOT mean people should not:
- Donate, etc.
Where and why those things should be done are in previous 10 Days of Purpose posts. So below my usual sign-off is a list of things that need prayerful attention. It’s not in any particular order. Furthermore, there will be some additional significant items for prayer in the remaining posts in this series.
And one more thing. Prayer is like GRACE. It’s available to ALL. I know everyone can’t go or give however much those things are needed. But everyone can pray. Will you? I’d love to hear from you about that!
Soli Deo Gloria!
- Mission Volunteers for November
- Pastors to help teach
- Churches to plug in with the work in Samana
- Motorcycle for Pastor Juan
- Mission volunteers for November
- Ministry funding/support – trust me on this one
- Orphans – sponsorship is needed
- Jodie, Orphanage director
- Orphanage funding