March 30, 2020
Today’s scriptures are Psalm 143 and 1 Kings 17: 17 – 24. Hopefully you will get time to read the whole of these but following are some verses to focus on for today.
Psalm 143: 6 – 8 says “I spread out my hands to you; my soul thirsts for you like a parched land. Answer me quickly, O Lord; my spirit fails. Do not hide your face from me or I will be like those who go down to the pit. Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you . . .”
In 1 Kings 17: 19 – 21, Elijah has just found out that the son of the widow he was staying with has passed away. “‘Give me your son’, Elijah replied. He took him from her arms, carried him to the upper room where he was staying and laid him on his bed. Then he cried out to the Lord, ‘O Lord my God, have you brought tragedy also upon this widow I am staying with, by causing her son to die?’ Then he stretched himself out on the boy three times and cried to the Lord ‘O Lord my God, let this boy’s life return to him.’”(NIV)
In this season of Lent (which I am still learning about as a “new” Lutheran), it seems we are to focus on the repenting of sin. Having a repentant heart has always implied to me that there should be an underlying spirit of contrition in my pleas. Furthermore, I envisioned that my prayers should be in the form of supplication, or humble requests. Additionally, I have interpreted that the Lenten season is a time for reconnecting with God, of increasing prayer time and devotion time. I used to teach children in Children’s Church that it is easier to turn a light on when it is plugged in and likewise it is easier to get our prayers attended to if we are in daily communion with God.
As I look at these prayers above, I see boldness more than humility. Obviously, Elijah was praying out of urgent need and perhaps David was too. However, as I review their petitions, I am led to see a more “New Testament” tone to prayers. Nothing I have ever done or could ever hope to do could make me worthy to confidently pray, except just this one thing. I, a miserable and sorry sinner, am indeed permitted to approach the throne with a degree of boldness and know I will have the ear of my Holy Heavenly Father, because I have accepted that Jesus died for me. It is beyond humbling to try to grasp the magnitude of the gift I have been given.
For certain, it is desirable to “plugged in” with daily prayer, devotion, and even discussion with God. This is the way that brings peace. Still praise be to our Holy God who allows Himself to be approached freely through His Son. “What a Friend We Have in Jesus!”
Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for hearing us when we pray. We know that You, the “Lord of all the earth” care to know our names and our hurts, (parts of lines borrowed from “Who am I” by Casting Crowns) and that is humbling to think about.
Prayer Concern: Those who don’t feel their prayers are hear