Are you paving the way for a miracle? Or have you given up? Many of us have been praying for a long time for certain things to happen, and haven’t yet seen the answer to our prayers. Perhaps you’ve been praying for a family member to be saved or healed, or for a move of God, or for a change in your circumstances. Whatever it is, when you’ve prayed for a long time without seeing an answer, the temptation is to become discouraged or disappointed and to feel that nothing is going to change.
I want to encourage you today that every prayer you’ve prayed, every act of obedience to God, every kindness shown in the Name of the Lord, is sowing for a harvest – and you will reap the reward of it, if you don’t give up.
Now a miracle is a supernatural act of God, that cannot be accomplished by human means, but I think that for too long in the church we have had a rather narrow view of what a miracle is. Usually we think in terms of creative miracles, where God grows a short arm or leg to full length, or gives a person new eyeballs, or where someone has been dead for some time, and then is brought back to life (which are of course wonderful miracles).
But in fact, when God grants repentance to a backslider, or changes your work situation to suit His plans for your life, or through prayer and Christian counselling God restores a marriage that was on the rocks – these things all demonstrate the miracle working power of God.
Realise that every time you share your testimony, share the gospel, offer to pray for someone, act on what God is showing you to do, invite someone to church, encourage someone in the Name of the Lord, show the love of God to your neighbours and workmates, be a good example to those who know you’re a Christian….all these things are spiritual acts which set things in motion in the spiritual realm, and pave the way for a miraculous intervention by God.
We tend to think we’re just doing ordinary, earthly things from a Christian perspective. No. You’re doing those things because you’re a child of God, a spiritual being, an ambassador of heaven. Everything you do and say in that context has spiritual repercussions. Your actions and reactions may mean the difference in someone’s eternal destiny. That’s why we need to be so careful in the way we live and the words we speak
Recently, Natasha spoke to a Foodlink client in major stress and distress, because of a situation with her adult daughter. Natasha asked if she would like to speak to a pastor, but the lady said: ‘No, she had been away from God for a long time’ and wasn’t ready to do that. She was asked if she would like to fill in a prayer request so we could pray for her. ‘No. She didn’t want to do that either. In the end, Natasha gave her a hug and asked would she mind if we did pray for her, and she said, ‘No, that would be all right’, and went on her way.
Natasha told me the circumstances and asked me to pray. She was obviously moved with compassion, and disappointed that all she could give was a hug. But who knows what God can do with a hug? That lady would have gone home knowing that someone from the church cared – that someone wanted to help. An action like that sets in motion a domino effect in the spiritual realm. Just that hug may cause her to reflect on a time when she was walking with God. Then the Holy Spirit gets in on the act and starts reminding her of things she learnt, experiences she’s had, where she lost out on her relationship with God. It may be the very means of her turning back to God.
Take the case of an unsaved husband. The Bible tells us: that the unsaved husband may be converted by the way his wife treats him. For instance – a woman gets saved, and goes home all excited wanting her husband to become a Christian too. He’s not interested. She feels frustrated and disappointed, but instead of allowing those feelings to rise up and cause irritation between them, she just continues to love him, but now there’s an added dimension of the love of God in what she does. She’s not critical or judgmental of his ungodly ways, she continues to cook his favourite meals and meet him at the door with open arms. Soon he’s going to notice the difference. He’ll probably even notice that their love life is better since she became a Christian, because the love of God is flowing through her. That wife is sowing for a harvest, she’s paving the way for a miracle conversion.
Your life is more powerful than most of us realise. I believe we need to take a fresh look at who we are in Christ, because many Christians see themselves as just an ordinary person with Christ in their heart.
It’s true that when you ask the Lord to forgive your sins and come into your life, you’re saved, and you receive the gift of eternal life. But it’s a whole lot more than that.
At the very moment you were saved, a supernatural transaction took place in the spiritual realm. The Bible says you became a new creature in Christ – ‘old things are passed away, behold (observe, watch, take a look at) all things have become new’ (2 Cor.5:17).
John1:12,13 ‘Yet to all who received Him, to those who believed in His Name, he gave the right to become children of God – children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision, or a husband’s will, but born of God.
John 3:5,6 Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit”. You have been born again by the Spirit of God.
You have become in essence, a spiritual being in an earthly body. From that moment on, all your words, all your actions, have spiritual repercussions, whether you like it or not. Actually, we don’t like it, when we realise we’ve done the wrong thing, or had a bad attitude, because really we know in our hearts that it’s out of character with who we really are as children of God.
If we really understood this, I believe it would make a difference to the way we live. You’d come to realise the power of the Holy Spirit who is in you – that you are powerful beyond your own comprehension because of the Spirit of God in you. 1 John 1:5 ‘God is light; in Him there is no darkness at all’.
You now live a life of significant spiritual influence. You have a powerful influence in the world around you, and the more you become aware of it, the greater your influence will be. Every Godly word, every prayer, every Godly action has within it the potential for a miracle, but it seems that the demonstration of the power of God in our lives becomes more evident in our lives the more we become aware of it, and grow in our understanding of it.
So how do we do that?
The only way I know is to discover the power and Presence of God in the secret place.
There’s one further aspect of this that we need to consider, and it’s found in Gal.6:9 ‘Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up’. Generally speaking, we don’t just get tired of doing good. If you’re truly a Christian, then you like to be kind and helpful and patient with people. You’re not about to say: ‘I just can’t be bothered any more’. What makes us weary, is that while we’re in the process of ‘doing good’ we’re also in a spiritual battle. Everyone is battling something – maybe it’s family circumstances, work problems, or physical problems. Perhaps you’re suffering from pain in the battle for living in divine health.
It’s the battles that make us weary, and the enemy knows it. His clear plan and intention is to make the people of God weary, so they become discouraged and give up. But that’s exactly what we must not do. What did we just read? ‘At the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up’.
Acts 12:1-5 – It was about this time that King Herod arrested some who belonged to the church, intending to persecute them. 2 He had James, the brother of John, put to death with the sword. 3 When he saw that this pleased the Jews, he proceeded to seize Peter also. This happened during the Feast of Unleavened Bread. 4 After arresting him, he put him in prison, handing him over to be guarded by four squads of four soldiers each. Herod intended to bring him out for public trial after the Passover. 5 So Peter was kept in prison, but the church was earnestly praying to God for him.
The church was praying earnestly for Peter. They were praying in faith, yet I’m quite sure that it was faith mixed with fear. They knew that James had been put to death with the sword, and they had good reason to believe that the same would happen to Peter. But they prayed earnestly all through Passover.
Acts 12:6 The night before Herod was to bring him to trial, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains, and sentries stood guard at the entrance. 7 Suddenly an angel of the Lord appeared and a light shone in the cell. He struck Peter on the side and woke him up. “Quick, get up!” he said, and the chains fell off Peter’s wrists. 8 Then the angel said to him, “Put on your clothes and sandals.” And Peter did so. “Wrap your cloak around you and follow me,” the angel told him. 9 Peter followed him out of the prison, but he had no idea that what the angel was doing was really happening; he thought he was seeing a vision. 10 They passed the first and second guards and came to the iron gate leading to the city. It opened for them by itself, and they went through it. When they had walked the length of one street, suddenly the angel left him.
When Herod sent four squads of soldiers to guard Peter, it became blatantly obvious that he wanted to make very sure that Peter didn’t escape. What if the church had not prayed so earnestly? What if they had given up after an hour or so? Would God have still performed such a wonderful miracle? I think not.
If you’re praying for a miracle today, or some miraculous intervention by God – don’t give up! Don’t grow so weary in the battle that you get discouraged. Fight the good fight of faith. Remember who you are – that your life and your prayers are far more powerful than you can imagine.
You are paving the way for a miracle – and at the proper time you will reap the reward – if you don’t give up.