The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…
"Prompts and Triggers"
I came down with a cold during Christmas, which reminded me of a practice I call "prompts to prayer" (my wife Frances refers to this as "triggers to prayer"). By this, I simply mean that the events of life can serve to remind us to pray for others. This includes things like my very minor discomfort in the present, and all other challenges of life that can and should lead us to seek God's grace for others experiencing trials of pain, loss, and difficulty.
"Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort, who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God" (II Corinthians 1:3-4).
Certainly, when we can comfort directly with our hands and voices, we do so, as led by the love of the Lord Jesus Christ. "As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men" (Galatians 6:10). Often, however, we do not possess the means to do anything more than pray. But what a means that is! When we hurt or suffer loss, we can approach the throne of grace to seek hope, balm, and help not only for ourselves, but for others. From the cross of His untold sorrow, agony, forsakenness, and loss, the Lord Jesus sought God's grace not only for others, but for those who has nailed Him to the tree. "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do" (Luke 23:34). His Spirit now lives in believers to lead us to the same prompts and triggers so reflective of the love of God.
"The love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us" (Romans 5:5).
"The Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give His life a ransom for many… Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others" (Matthew 20:28; Philippians 2:4).
A sublime and undoubtably effectual way of looking on "the things of others" directs us to prayerfully approach the throne of grace for the hurting and challenged when we experience the same. What might God do in wondrous ways as we pray from our pains for others? What might He feel when His suffering child overcomes our very human tendency to sink into ourselves when hurting, choosing rather to seek his Lord's help for others? Time and eternity will not tell of such grace given, and such grace received and bestowed on others. We can be sure, however, that our hurting hearts move the faithful heart and hand of God when we respond to the love of Christ and its blessed power to direct us away from ourselves unto God and others.
Many prompts and triggers to pray lie before us in this lifetime lived in a fallen, dying world. Some involve our personal pains that can serve to remind us to pray for others who hurt. The unselfish love of Christ dwelling and moving within us can lead us to seek help for others as well as ourselves at the throne of grace. Surely it pleases our Father to behold the character of His Son so revealed in us, and surely it moves Him to administer the grace of His Son for others and ourselves as we look upward, outward, and away from our pains to His glory and the blessing of others.
"Charity (love) seeketh not her own."
(I Corinthians 13:5)
Weekly Memory Verse
Thy mercy, o Lord, is in the heavens, Thy faithfulness reacheth unto the clouds.