~ Pulpit Ponderings ~
“The Coat Hanger and the Prayer!”
woman was at work when she received a phone call that her small daughter was
very sick with a fever. She left her work and stopped by the pharmacy to get
some medication. She got back to her car and found that she had locked her
keys in the car. She didn't know what to do, so she called home and told the
baby sitter what had happened. The
baby sitter told her that the fever was getting worse. She said, “You might
find a coat hanger and use that to open the door.”
The woman looked around and found an old rusty coat hanger that had been left on the ground, possibly by someone else who at some time had locked their keys in their car. She looked at the hanger and said, “I don't know how to use this.”
She bowed her head and asked God to send her help. Within five minutes a beat up old motor cycle pulled up, with a dirty, greasy, bearded man who was wearing an old biker skull rag on his head.
The woman thought, “This is what you sent to help me?” But, she was desperate, so she was also very thankful.
The man got off of his cycle and asked if he could help. She said, “Yes, my daughter is very sick. Please, can you use this hanger to unlock my car?”
He said, “Sure.” He walked over to the car, and in less than a minute the car was opened.
She hugged the man and through her tears she said, “Thank You So Much! You are a very nice man.”
man replied, “Lady, I am not a nice man. I just got out of prison today. I was
in prison for car theft and have only been out for about an hour.”
The woman hugged the man again and with sobbing tears cried out loud, “Oh, thank you God! You even sent me a Professional!”
Many, many times I have prayed to God for many reasons. Some have been requests for others and others were requests for me. But whatever the reason, I have always believed in the power of prayer. It is one of my greatest comforts knowing that I can converse with my Father at any time and take anything to him. Now that I have matured through my life experience, my prayers are not so much about me – though I still stick in a request from time to time. I used to get a little miffed and sometimes angry with God when I thought he was not listening to my heart-felt and sincere prayers. There were times that I just thought that I was not getting through to him, or that I was not being as faithful as I should be, or was doing something wrong. I never thought that God was answering my prayers in his own way and at his own time. Well he did! And he does!
In Genesis 18:33, God showed Abraham that asking for anything is allowed, with the understanding that God’s answers come from God’s perspective. His answers are not always within our expectations, for only he knows the whole story. Often we miss God’s answers because we have not considered any possible answers other than the one we expect.
Who knows better what is best for us? Who knows better what is in store for us? Who loves us beyond all comprehension? It is God and God alone.
We are more apt to be impatient to wait for God to work in our lives and when he does we are not as observant as we should be – we miss his works and miracles. Often it is our arrogance that makes us impatient. If we cannot have it now then forget it – I’ll do it myself or do something else. We are impervious to the idea that God has a master plan for all humankind and that we, in whatever way, have a part in that plan.
Sometimes we become more concerned in what we think God is not doing than what God is really doing. In Exodus 11:4-9, the people of Israel became dissatisfied with God because they allowed their attention to shift from what they had to what they did not have. They did not notice what God was providing them – setting them free, making them a nation, and giving them a new land. Instead they were more concerned with what they believed God was not doing for them. They could do nothing but remember the delicious Egyptian food they had left behind. But they forgot the brutal Egyptian whip of slavery was the cost of that food. Yet, before we judge the Israelites too harshly, it’s helpful to think for what God has given us, or are we always thinking about what we would like to have? We should not allow our unfulfilled desires to cause us to forget God’s gifts of life, food, work, family, and friends.
I encourage my brothers and sisters to wait on God to work in our lives. And as you do, be more observant to what is going on around you and look not at the bad, but look for the good in people and all things, and be thankful for what God has provided each of us and how he works in our lives. If you do, then you might better understand God’s answer to your prayers. Also, trust in God to do what is best after all he created everything, he created all people to benefit of his creation, and he will not let us go without answering our prayers. Why? Simply – he loves us unconditionally! Always has and always will!
His Peace and Blessings to all of you, as you continue to believe, have hope, and do the work of the Lord.
As Always – In His Grip …
Shalom Aleichem (Peace Be Unto You),
“How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, ‘Your God reigns!’” – Isaiah 52:7