Then they asked him, “What did he do to you? How did he open your eyes?”
He answered, “I have told you already and you did not listen. Why do you want to hear it again? Do you want to become his disciples too?”
Then they hurled insults at him and said, “You are this fellow’s disciple! We are disciples of Moses! We know that God spoke to Moses, but as for this fellow, we don’t even know where he comes from.”
The man answered, “Now that is remarkable! You don’t know where he comes from, yet he opened my eyes. We know that God does not listen to sinners. He listens to the godly person who does his will. Nobody has ever heard of opening the eyes of a man born blind. If this man were not from God, he could do nothing.”
To this they replied, “You were steeped in sin at birth; how dare you lecture us!” And they threw him out.
- John 9:26-34
“Most of our prayer lives could use a tune-up.
“Some prayer lives lack consistency. They’re either a desert or an oasis. Long, arid, dry spells interrupted by brief plunges into the waters of communion. …
“Others of us need sincerity. Our prayers are a bit hollow, memorized, and rigid. More liturgy than life. And though they are daily, they are dull.
“Still others lack, well, honesty. We honestly wonder if prayer makes a difference. Why on earth would God in heaven want to talk to me? If God knows all, who am I to tell him anything? If God controls all, who am I to do anything? …
“Our prayers may be awkward. Our attempts may be feeble. But since the power of prayer is in the one who hears it and not the one who says it, our prayers do make a difference. …”
- Max Lucado, He Still Moves Stones
I think the devotion and Scripture link that Rev. Lucado was going for is the statement by the former blind man that God does not listen to sinners. Yet, He hears us when we say, “Lord, have pity on me, a sinner. I repent of my sins, and I accept your Son into my heart.”
Yet, even then, God knows our heart that nanosecond before we actually say the words. So, for you who have been taught that you “must say the salvation prayer or it doesn’t count,” I think you are wrong. Goes knows our hearts before our brain can get the words to our mouth.
But as for the tune-up? Oh, boy…
Can you be guilty of all three? Maybe not simultaneously, but…
As I write posts daily, almost, I am in communion with God daily. Sometimes it seems that He takes over the typing. Of course, the choice of subject to write about came from devotional time and prayer time, most of the time. But it is so easy to lapse into an irregular rhythm in worshipping, praying, and Bible study. Every time you have a shift in schedule, there seems to be a struggle to reestablish that ‘One Time’ that is inviolate. I have stumbled for the past 3-4 weeks since my wife is back home.
Then for the second point, my blessings over meals needs a total replacement. Flush it down the drain and start over. Forget the renovations. It is just too far gone, too rote. Too memorized. Too little life. And as Max Lucado says, too dull.
The third type of tune-up for most of us is more of a faith tune-up or a giant slap in the face. God is all-powerful. The power is within God. He can do it, so what is your excuse for not believing that He will? Why say that you are unworthy, if you trust God in everything and know that God personally loves you?
It’s like the old GPS devices, you drive past your turn and they say “Recalculating.” If this is your problem, pull the car to the side of the road, quit listening to the GPS telling you to recalculate your beliefs at every intersection. Ask yourself, “Am I asking for a Mercedes Benz, a trip to Europe, and a summer home in the mountains? Or am I asking for my daily bread, which includes all my daily needs? And am I glorifying God with all that God provides?” God will not lavish you with things unless you truly need them to do His Will on this earth.
But if your priorities are in the right place, you can rest assured that God will deliver. Maybe not what you asked for, but He will give you what you need. And when your faith seems to be running close to empty, God will let you know that He IS listening. That’s when the “Oh WOW!” moments occur.
Soli Deo Gloria. Only to God be the Glory.