The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…
"The Volume He Pens"
"And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written. Amen" (John 21:25).
Suppose we pray a prayer for a fellow believer, John. We ask the Lord to work in his life according to Scriptural teaching regarding how and what to pray for fellow Christians, and also in accordance with things we know about our brother. As we ask "according to His will," our Heavenly Father answers (I John 5:14). However, He does so in ways that must perfectly coordinate with the entirety of John's life and relationship with God and people. This means the Lord's working in answer to prayers for our brother may be fulfilled in a manner completely unbeknownst to us, or in ways that may not even look like His answers. Indeed, the Lord Jesus Christ appeared as the answer to centuries of prayer by His people Israel. They missed Him, however, because He came in ways they did not expect. "He came unto His own, and His own received Him not" (John 1:11).
In this light, we see that prayer involves far more complexity - at least for our minds - than we usually consider. However, the matter is actually infinitely more challenging when we also ponder that God's answers to prayer for John must align with prayers prayed for a Christian sister, Jane. Our Lord must perfectly coordinate His working in both our brother and our sister. He cannot answer a prayer for John that might jeopardize His answers for Jane. Moreover, He must avoid any error as He coordinates answers to prayer for millions and millions of believers. For a God whose "way is perfect," all must align perfectly for His eternal purposes to be fulfilled (II Samuel 22:31). No piece of God's historical puzzle can fail to align with every other piece, including every answer to prayer He has ever or ever will provide. Complex? The word does not begin to describe our Heavenly Father's ways and means as He "works all things together for good" to those who love Him (Romans 8:28).
What is the Lord doing in our lives? To echo the Apostle John's description of our Savior's earthly lifetime, all the books in the world could not contain that should be written. Our lives teem with the vibrant and living presence of the God who wondrously "worketh all things after the counsel of His own will" (Ephesians 1:11). How does He do what He does?? How does He coordinate everything that ever happens in creation to answer perfectly synthesized prayers for John and Jane - and for all - as He works to fulfill "the eternal purpose which He purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord?" (Ephesians 3:11). We can never begin to know. We can only wonder, believe, and realize how much we can trust Someone possessed of such knowledge, understanding, and wisdom. "O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments, and His ways past finding out!" (Romans 11:33).
A final point: the truth we consider will likely make us far less wordy in our prayers, enabling us to avoid the "much speaking" for which the Lord Jesus so criticized religious hypocrites of His day (Matthew 6:7). Our Lord does not require us to inform Him in our prayers of what He needs to do. "We know not what we should pray for as we ought… Thy will be done" (Romans 8:26; Matthew 6:10). However, the truth we consider greatly encourages our consistency in prayer as we make our approach to God in far greater humility, and with far greater confidence as we ask Him to do what He sees as best, as opposed to attempting to help Him figure that out. Believers play a vital role in the fulfillment of God's purposes through prayer. However, in real terms, we know very little of how He works in response to our requests. We just know that He does, and again, that "the world itself could not contain the books that should be written."
"His understanding is infinite."
Weekly Memory Verse
He that believeth on Him shall not be confounded.
(I Peter 2:6)