A few years ago, I went on a wonderful quiet day at a nearby Abbey; a day in the company of others, but where we literally didn’t speak to each other but waited for God to speak to us. This was something he showed me. I can still see this vividly in my mind and feel the peace that is there…
“A picture of the universe, rotating. At the centre, is a dark circle, like the pupil of an eye, with the iris surrounding it. God is in that quiet, still, timeless place; it is where His provision comes from. We need to rest in that same quiet, still, timeless place, where He is. If it’s timeless, we can be there constantly, as it’s not a material, time-passing place. Being in the timeless place brings protection – we cannot be hurt there because a) we are with God, and b) nothing else can be there that is material.
We need to go to that place, run to that place, stay in that place of refuge and rest. Curves are of the Lord, corners are manmade – you cannot hide in a curve, you are always in His presence.
The song says, Jesus be the Centre, but He already IS the centre! We ask for Him to be at the centre of us – He wants us to be at the centre with Him.”
As Christians, we often berate ourselves and feel bad about not spending hours in prayer, pleading mournfully over world situations or the needs of people we know. Of course, there are some who are called to be intercessors, who do spend many hours at a time in prayer because God has given them a burden to pray for these things and to keep praying until there is breakthrough. For the majority of us though, we throw up a prayer here and there as we think of something, or see a need, and might expect that God is not very pleased with that. We call these arrow prayers.
Now, remember that the Lord made the physical universe and the laws that govern it… We cannot see light waves as such, but we can see everything else because of them. We cannot see air, but we can feel it when it’s windy. When an arrow is fired, the split second it is released from the bow, the arrowhead has an effect on the air molecules in front of it, pushing them out of the way. Very simply put, as the arrow speeds towards its target, millions of molecules have already been affected and some of the energy that was transferred from the bow into the arrow is transformed into heat from friction, and will be released into the air around it. We wait for the arrow to hit the target, but we do not see the effect it is having on its way there.
Father God does not despise our arrow prayers. Even as we are thinking or speaking them, they are already having an effect in the spiritual realm that is not seen by us in the natural. Sometimes we may never even see whether the target was hit, but we do know we have a loving Father whom we can trust. When we pray, however simply, His ear is inclined towards us and His desire is to bless.
Satan must have been laughing all the way to hell when Jesus died on the cross. He thought he’d won, but he’d actually made a massive tactical error. As Obi-Wan Kenobi told the evil Darth Vader in Star Wars, “If you strike me down I shall become more powerful than you can possibly imagine.” And Jesus rose from the depths of hell, victorious; alive with resurrection power, restored to his position of honour and authority at God’s right hand.
He promised that those who believe and trust in him will receive power from on high in the form of the Holy Spirit so, in the words of Hillsong, “The same power that conquered the grave lives in me” – lives in us! The SAME POWER! How amazing is that?!! The same power that spoke the universe into being; the same power that commanded the storm to cease; the same power that brought forth life and health in countless afflicted people during Jesus’ ministry… lives in us.
Why then do we, who call ourselves Christians, often act so helpless? ALL our sins were nailed to the cross and taken to the grave with Jesus. By God’s grace we are free and empowered with HIS spirit! We must walk daily in the knowledge of that power and understand that it is available to us at all times, but we need to SPEAK to release it. Jesus spoke and it was made so. If we remain silent we will never change anything!
The world is looking for a hero and not just any hero, but a SUPERhero! One who will stand up for the weak, be a friend to those in need and vanquish all our enemies. He has to be able to save the world in spectacular fashion! There’s Batman, Superman, Spiderman… But none are greater than GOD-MAN!
This is the superhero that calms the storm, turns water into wine, heals the sick, raises the dead… NOTHING is impossible for him; he speaks and it is made so. They tried to kill him but he came back from the dead – even the grave could not hold him! We are always safe with him because he is the genuine article, the one who is greater than all the other superheroes and always by our side.
When we stand up and say “Don’t look at me – I’m with HIM! HE is my refuge; HE is my strength; HE is my healer; HE is my provider!” then He is! From the very first time we ask him into our lives and situations, he’s right there and says he will never leave us from that day forward. That’s my kind of superhero… How about you?
Giving all for Him… can it be that hard? He gave His all for me. In that silent place of suffering, alone and in more pain that it is possible to describe. Can I give my all for Him? And, if not, why not? Isn’t that what friends and loved ones do for one another – give sacrificially – at some point in their lives?
My sacrifice will not hurt me the way His hurt Him. I will not have to endure brutal beatings, false conviction and hanging from a cross until I’m dead. My sacrifice will be small by comparison, but still I’m struggling. It takes courage to abandon one’s security – and I’m not that brave! Yet, if Jesus stood before me now, in the flesh, holding out His hand and saying, “Come!”, I would go without hesitation, wherever He wanted to lead me.
When we become Christians, we learn to “talk the talk”, but it gets more difficult as we set out to “walk the walk”. Jesus requires that we make sacrifices along the way – perhaps of our time, our money, our leisure pursuits, our family… Can the cost to us ever be too great to continue following Jesus? If we were to ask Him what He requires of us, He would say, “Everything.” But He gave His all for us – surely He is worthy of nothing less?