This Month's Messenger

Hello Fairview Heights!

If we stop and think about what is around us in this world we will truly be overwhelmed by the majesty of creation and then in return by the majesty of the Creator who brought all of this together with His words. Think about that; God began life with His words. Words are very important to God; so much so that He spoke personally to Adam and Eve in Eden, He spoke personally to Cain when disciplining him; He spoke personally to Noah, personally to Abraham, and then in the tent of meeting God speaks directly to Moses and we are told that the face of Moses would shine with the glory of God so brightly that he had to veil his face before the Israelites. God led Moses to write His words so that even we can hear God’s promises from Himself. God has revealed Himself to humanity through His written word, His mighty acts, and the testimony of those who have faithfully followed the LORD according to His word. The way the Scripture consistently tells us that God speaks to His followers and reveals wisdom to them is through prayer. God still desires to communicate personally with His people and the way in which He chooses to do this is through His written word and our prayer time. Prayer is time to think about what God’s Word is saying and speaking our thoughts and our feelings to God who listens, cares and even responds to work on our behalf. Too many times do we neglect this reality and try to do things on our own, out of our wisdom or ability or reasoning. When we look into these passages where people are praying we find that the scenes are very familiar and that the responses are simple and yet profound. Think about Elijah and the “still small voice” in 1 Kings 19.9-21 who was fearful for his very life and God encourages him by revealing that although He is powerful enough to shake the ground beneath our feet, He desires a relationship with us where He can speak to us in a personal way. Our life hangs in the balance of His plan for our life anyway,  shouldn’t seek after His wisdom for our life from the beginning? Prayer is the beginning point for God to move because we are humbly yielding to Him and patiently waiting for Him to move. We have given up the allusion of control, and have desired the goodness of His plan. Seeing God as the mover in our situation gives us the ability to give Him the glory for the outcome He has provided. When you read the Bible pay attention to people’s prayers looking for their motivation to pray, their situation, their words and then their outcome. Make your goal to pray scriptural prayers: prayers that speak scripture and model the prayers of scripture.

David was a great man of God, and very much a human being. He lived his life with God in the reality of a broken world. He wrestled with evil from with in himself and from the enemy with out - sometimes even his own allies! David was a man committed to prayer. The Psalms record a number of these prayers and reveal to us the earnest passion our prayers should exhibit and the powerful reality of the difference prayer makes in everyday life. In fact Psalm 72.20 refers to all of David’s Psalms as his prayers. Psalm 143 is a beautiful example of one of David’s prayers that are as meaningful and applicable today as it was years ago. Read Psalm 143 over several times, may be even over a period of several days or so and allow God’s “good Spirit to lead (you) on level ground.”

Psalms 143:

1  Hear my prayer, O LORD, Give ear to my supplications! Answer me in Your faithfulness, in Your righteousness!   2  And do not enter into judgment with Your servant, For in Your sight no man living is righteous.   3  For the enemy has persecuted my soul; He has crushed my life to the ground; He has made me dwell in dark places, like those who have long been dead.   4  Therefore my spirit is overwhelmed within me; My heart is appalled within me.   5  I remember the days of old; I meditate on all Your doings; I muse on the work of Your hands.   6  I stretch out my hands to You; My soul I longs for You, as a parched land.   7  Answer me quickly, O LORD, my spirit fails; Do not hide Your face from me, Or I will become like those who go down to the pit.   8  Let me hear Your lovingkindness in the morning; For I trust in You; Teach me the way in which I should walk; For to You I lift up my soul.   9  Deliver me, O LORD, from my enemies; I take refuge in You.   10  Teach me to do Your will, For You are my God; Let Your good Spirit lead me on level ground.   11  For the sake of Your name, O LORD, revive me. In Your righteousness bring my soul out of trouble.   12  And in Your lovingkindness, cut off my enemies And destroy all those who afflict my soul, For I am Your servant.

~Pastor Paul