We hope you will enjoy our “Prayer Note” — an internal communication here at The Cove, created each month to remind and encourage our staff to pray. We share these with you at the beginning of each month in hopes that you, too, will be encouraged.
Here in Western North Carolina we’re thankful the recent gas shortage appears to be at an end; but it did wake some of us up to consider a resource we so often take for granted.
A leak in a main pipeline in Alabama resulted in gasoline shortages across the Southeast. Our routine was interrupted for a few days as we faced long lines at gas stations…pump handles covered with plastic bags….entire banks of fuel pumps surrounded with yellow tape. We started thinking more strategically about quick trips to the grocery store or the mall. A few business trips were canceled. Some of us even tried to turn the negative situation into a heart-healthy positive by walking rather than driving to nearby destinations.
A pipeline that most of us have never had a glimpse of suddenly became a fairly significant factor in our everyday life. A resource we’d taken for granted was now scarce. It affected our thinking, our finances, our travel and our plans. Although most of us only suffered minor inconveniences, each of us at one time or another probably wondered, “What if I run out of gas?”
Of all the “What if” scenarios that may plague our minds, we can be grateful there’s one question we’ll never have to ask:
WHAT IF I COULDN’T PRAY?
1 Peter 3:12 tells us “the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and His ears are open to their prayers.” Even a heavy conscience and a heart clogged with sin cannot sever our connection to God’s grace. His Word tells us to “Seek the Lord while He may be found, call upon Him while He is near. Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; let him return to the Lord, and He will have mercy on him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon (Isaiah 55:6, NKJV).” Our all-powerful God is an abundant, limitless, never-failing source of goodness, grace, mercy, love and forgiveness; and His ear is always open.
Praise God, there is no leaky pipeline that can close off our communication with our heavenly Father. Trials may drain us of hope, and disappointments may find us running low on faith, but here’s the bottom line: “For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 8:38-39, NIV).” God loves us; and because He loves us, He loves to hear our prayers!
Despite this truth, there are times when it does in fact feel like we cannot pray—times when God seems distant and unreachable, and our prayers appear futile. In those times we can rest in the knowledge that God’s Word is true and His character and promises, unchangeable. When we can’t see His hand or feel His presence, we can remind ourselves of His faithfulness. Despite our struggles in life and in prayer, God is there. In time the darkness will lift and prayer will again bring sweet communion. In the meantime, He will not relax His hold on us.
As we think about the priceless resource of prayer, here are a few other “What if” questions we may want to ask ourselves:
“What if I thought as strategically about my prayer life as I do about my gas tank?”
“What if I stopped taking prayer for granted and started making it a priority?”
“What if I ceased ‘running on empty’ and paused to ask God for wisdom, strength and direction?”
“What if I refused to allow worry and fear to drain me of joy and instead allowed the Holy Spirit to fill me with hope?”
“What if I made a more regular practice of handing over all my ‘what ifs’ to God in prayer?
Before we head into the busy month of October, what if we just prayed?
Join us in praying for the following events in October:
OCTOBER 2016 EVENTS
All seminars in 2016 are free (lodging and meal fees apply).
(For more information or to register, click on the links below.)
Henry, Richard and Mike Blackaby — October 7-9
Bob Russell — October 10-12
The Reason for Hope
Erwin Lutzer — October 24-26
God, Why Me?
Tommy Nelson — October 28-30
Military Marriage Retreat — The Book of Romance (Song of Solomon)
Thanks for praying!