I write a lot about having peace in the midst of life’s storms and the value of suffering. From time to time, so that my words are not hollow, God gives me the opportunity to practice what I preach. Just so you know, I don’t enjoy the school of trials and suffering anymore than you do. I am convinced however, that through difficult circumstances we have the opportunity to draw near to God, to learn from him and to invite him to be our solution in our distress.
The reality that I am powerless to control the world around me is strikingly evident today. As circumstances around me are not what I would like them to be and no matter how much I desire to change them, that change is not dependent on me, but on others. The only power that I have to make effective change in my circumstances is through prayer. Prayer brings my petition to the ear of my father God and prayer changes attitudes and circumstances in a way that I, personally, could never do.
I was reminded of a powerful prayer as I read from 1 Kings. Solomon had built the temple and as he dedicated it to God, he prayed, “The LORD our God be with us, as he was with our fathers. May he not leave us or forsake us, that he may incline our hearts to him, to walk in all his ways and to keep his commandments, his statutes, and his rules, which he commanded our fathers.
Let these words of mine, with which I have pleaded before the LORD, be near to the LORD our God day and night, and may he maintain the cause of his servant and the cause of his people Israel, as each day requires, – 1 Kings 8:57-59
King Solomon knew that prayer was the key element in sustaining God’s people. His words, spoken thousands of years ago are powerful and as pertinent today as they were at the temple dedication. As I face the trials that life brings my way, I glean from Solomon’s Prayer and paraphras, “Lord be with me and my family, do not leave us nor forget about us. Turn our hearts to you and give us the desire to live according to your guidelines for life. Help us to keep your commandments, laws and rules which you established. Hear my prayer, may you hear it over and over even when I am no longer praying, may you remember my plea and sustain me and my family each day. Amen!”
I don’t know what difficulties you face today, but I do know that God has the answer and wants to help you. Will you invite him to help you today by reach out to him in prayer?