Sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear. 1 Peter 3:15.
I have been shown that many who profess to have a knowledge of present truth know not what they believe. They do not understand the evidences of their faith. They have no just appreciation of the work for the present time. When the time of trial shall come, there are men now preaching to others who will find, upon examining the positions they hold, that there are many things for which they can give no satisfactory reason. Until thus tested they know not their great ignorance. And there are many in the church who take it for granted that they understand what they believe; but, until controversy arises, they do not know their own weakness. When separated from those of like faith and compelled to stand singly and alone to explain their belief, they will be surprised to see how confused are their ideas of what they had accepted as truth. . . .
God will arouse His people; if other means fail, heresies will come in among them, which will sift them, separating the chaff from the wheat. The Lord calls upon all who believe His word to awake out of sleep. Precious light has come, appropriate for this time. . . . Believers are not to rest in suppositions and ill-defined ideas of what constitutes truth. Their faith must be firmly founded upon the word of God so that when the testing time shall come and they are brought before councils to answer for their faith they may be able to give a reason for the hope that is in them, with meekness and fear.
The servants of Christ are to prepare no set speech to present when brought to trial for their faith. Their preparation is to be made day by day, in treasuring up in their hearts the precious truths of God’s word, in feeding upon the teaching of Christ, and through prayer strengthening their faith; then, when brought into trial, the Holy Spirit will bring to their remembrance the very truths that will reach the hearts of those who shall come to hear.
God will flash the knowledge obtained by diligent searching of the Scriptures, into their memory at the very time when it is needed.
Maranatha p. 45
—-Please pray for my brother-in-law Roy. He had surgery last week and is not doing well. Rose
—– Please keep Andrea in your prayers. She was rushed to the emergency room and found a blood clot in her lung. BJ
—–Please pray for Mrs. S. age 95. She has cervical fractures of the C-1/C-2 vertebrae. This is very serious indeed. This lovely lady and her husband befriended me when I had not been in the church very long. Nearly every Sabbath, they would invite me (as well as some others) over for a meal and fellowship. They had a big part in keeping me in the church as my mother was set against my decision to follow Christ. Rose
——Please pray for my dad. He had back surgery this past week. He’s at home now. I just called him and he said he feels terrible and his heart is bothering him. So he’s having a friend drive him to the hospital. Please, please keep him in prayer. Mihaela
—–update—-My dad will be gone soon. They said probably a matter of hours but could be a day. Prayers appreciated. Jami
Around the year 2000, Esther Marie went to do Bible work in West Virginia. Just before she went, she bought a used laptop computer. She wanted to have it to read any e-mails that she would receive. She rarely had time to reply, but it was fun getting messages from others. It eased the loneliness that she felt.
After a few months, she began having problems with the modem. Every time that she tried to connect, she got a message saying that she needed to install a modem before trying to get online. Why the computer suddenly refused to recognize it, we didn’t know. Ron finally had to buy her a new modem so she could get online once more.
Sometimes it is the same with us spiritually. There are times when we feel disconnected, like our “prayer modem” is uninstalled. We feel as if our prayers never reach the ears of our Heavenly Father. We struggle and pray and cry, but we do not receive that for which we plead. We wrestle with all of our might, but do not seem to prevail. We claim the promises found in the Word of God, but circumstances only get worse. We ask ourselves, “Why?”
There are times we need to experience this heartfelt need for our own benefit. As we ask and keep on asking, we search our heart to see if there is something standing in the way of receiving our request knowing that if we regard iniquity in our heart, the Lord will not hear us. (Ps 66:18) Isaiah explains, “Behold, the LORD’S hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear: But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear. For your hands are defiled with blood, and your fingers with iniquity; your lips have spoken lies, your tongue hath muttered perverseness.” Isa 59:1-3
During the time when our prayer seems to fall to the ground, we learn perseverance. As we continue to press our petitions before the Great King of the Universe, we wrestle as did Jacob with the Angel. Our Dear Saviour gave a parable of contrasts which taught this principle. “There was in a city a judge, which feared not God, neither regarded man: And there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine adversary. And he would not for a while: but afterward he said within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man; Yet because this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me. And the Lord said, Hear what the unjust judge saith. And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them? I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?” Luke 18:1-8
James explains another reason for our feeling disconnected and alone. “Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.” James 4:3 Often we ask for the wrong things because of our lack of understanding. In mercy our Loving Father withholds that for which we ask and gives us that which we need. How seldom we recognize His answer and continue our struggling for that which would only cause us pain and heartache if we received it.
When our prayers seem to go unanswered, we should spend time in the Word of God in order to see if that for which we are pleading is in accordance with God’s will. As we search the Scriptures, we draw closer to its Author. We receive the that which we need to become ” strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.” Eph 6:10
May we trust our Great Redeemer, casting all our care upon Him for we have the assurance that He cares for us. (1 Peter 5:7) May we “study to show [ourselves] approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” 2 Tim 2:15 May we humbly accept God’s answer to our prayers knowing that He Who knows the end from the beginning knows what is best for us.