Where do you turn in times of trouble?
Are you praying for the world?
Events in Israel are a central topic of interest in the news, the world, and the church. At home, we’ve got local elections, a new Speaker of the House, and folks starting to throw their name in the presidential candidacy hat.
There’s a lot to talk about. But with all our talking and with all our listening to the talking heads, how much have we prayed about everything happening?
This isn’t a political conversation. It’s a leadership conversation. How are you leading your family in this?
Ephesians 4:29 commands, “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouth, but only what is helpful for building others up, so that it may benefit those who listen.”
We have an opportunity here to be men of prayer who lead our families by example in turning over our worldly concerns to the Lord and exhibiting our faith through the type of speech that comes out of our mouths.
Do you speak fear? Complaining? Disrespect?
Or do you open your mouth in prayer? What do your wife and children see reflected in you?
Is your faith evident through your words?
Jesus tells us that the world will see our hearts through the words that come out of our mouths.
“The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.” Luke 6:45
We must begin with the heart to change what comes out of it. Fortunately, we are not left without instructions to do so.
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-9
Let’s break that down.
1. Don’t worry about it!
Whenever you find yourself tempted to worry, turn that into prayer. You can apply this principle to complaining or even anger – all symptoms of unrest in our hearts.
2. Pray about everything.
The exact thing that’s concerning you can be turned over to him, cast off, and left in his hands. Refuse to make it your problem to solve. Let me assure you that God is not wringing his hands about the outcome of anything happening in the world. Nothing can thwart his purposes.
3. Give thanks to God as you do.
No matter what, we have much to be grateful for, which will help us keep the proper perspective.
4. The result is that you’ll receive incomprehensible peace from God through Christ Jesus.
You won’t get this from worry, complaining, or anything else. Only God can give this kind of peace.
Knowing and doing are not the same thing. Likewise, talking about something and praying about it are not the same. Our help is from the Lord alone, and “He who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.” So, who do we talk to when we should be talking to the Father?
The International Mission Board posted a prayer guide for Israel. If this is a source of concern for you, I encourage you to turn those worries into prayer.
I lift up my eyes to the hills.
From where does my help come?
2 My help comes from the Lord,
who made heaven and earth.
3 He will not let your foot be moved;
he who keeps you will not slumber.
4 Behold, he who keeps Israel
will neither slumber nor sleep.
5 The Lord is your keeper;
the Lord is your shade on your right hand.
6 The sun shall not strike you by day,
nor the moon by night.
7 The Lord will keep you from all evil;
he will keep your life.
8 The Lord will keep
your going out and your coming in
from this time forth and forevermore.
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