Let Us Proclaim, “The Lord Saves!”
June 15, 2015
Tonight I am so relieved and so thankful to the Lord. He does answer prayer. He does hear. He is merciful. And He is the God who does do miracles. (Ps. 77:14)
Yesterday my parents called to tell me that a relative had called them, distressed because her (elderly and sick) husband was about to slip from this life any day. When my dad tried to console Ida (not her real name) by saying, “Well, you’ve been through this before”, because her first husband had died of a brain tumor over 30 years ago, she answered that this time was a lot different. She said this time was harder because with her first husband, she knew he was saved, whereas with Phil (not his real name), she had no such assurance.
Truly, all the time we’ve known him, Phil has been resistant about discussing spiritual things; and though he has prioritized being good, he was obviously not born again. My dad suggested to Ida that she ask her husband if he would pray along with her as she led him to confess his sins and ask God, through Christ, to save him. She said she would try.
I felt very heavy-hearted last night when I went to bed. I told my husband how awful it was to think of Phil about to step into an eternity without the Lord. I went to sleep praying for Phil’s salvation. This morning, I began praying when I woke up, but I had a hard time believing Phil would actually humble himself. The times when it’s hard for me to pray in faith, I often refrain from “extras”, like coffee, chocolate, sodas, sweets, and movies, so that in so doing, I am nevertheless, through action, making a declaration of faith. (Fasting food is powerful, but for health reasons, I have, for some time now, put this practice on hold, though I would definitely recommend short food fasts for all who can do so.)
Well, throughout today I fasted all “extras” and kept praying. I praised and even sang some praises, letting God hear me proclaim His mercy, His power, and His ability to soften a stubborn heart. Mid-day my mom and I prayed on the phone together for Phil, and she told me that both her and my dad had been very burdened last night, as I had been. She told me that although it was hard to believe for the miracle, she had decided to believe and so was praying in faith. There was a point in time today when I had that breakthrough too. I thought, “I just don’t know what else to do about it. I can’t make Phil repent and I can’t make God make him.” But my next thought was, “But I have the power of prayer! Praying is how we get things accomplished and though I can’t do anything else about this, I can pray! And why has God told us to pray? –Because He answers prayer!!!” What a blessing! So I kept on, and I reminded my husband to pray and also texted a friend about it who promised she would be praying.
Guess what? My mom called this evening and told me that Ida had called them with good news. She had lead Phil in a prayer of repentance and salvation, and he had been willing and really did seem genuine. He even asked if he could go to the chapel to pray more! He couldn’t, but still, it indicated that he was truly desiring to talk with God and make sure he was completely right with Him.
Normally, I would think that last-minute prayers are rarely genuine. But, didn’t the Lord burden us to pray for a reason? Absolutely. And didn’t He give us the faith to believe that all things are possible? He did!
All things are possible –if God is willing it to happen. –And… if there are those who feel His Spirit nudge them to believe and pray, and will rise to the occasion.
Thank you, Lord God. For Your mercy, compassion, and power. Thank you, thank you. We know You are all-powerful. But sometimes we forget how immensely merciful You are as well. We love You, God, and we are so thankful, once again today, that we belong to a God who is so, so kind and good.
Now I understand, Lord, why I noted 1 Chron. 16:23 in my Bible this morning: “Sing to the LORD, all the earth; proclaim His salvation day after day.” Yes, the Lord saves!