November 13, 2020
“I’m in the hospital,” my friend emailed me. “I have COVID-19.”
My heart sunk.
Many recover. Many have few symptoms. And others test positive and have no symptoms at all.
So, what do we do when we learn a dear friend is in the hospital? Most would pray. I did. But are we praying out of our emotions or out of our convictions? Are we pleading out of fear? Or declaring God’s power out of faith? Are we trembling before an intimidating giant, or are we declaring that Almighty God is greater than any threat?
If we give the wrong answer, doubt turns to anxious moments. We secretly question God’s ability to rescue us. When dark diagnosis comes our way, we question why He didn’t prevent it. And when symptoms persist, we feel abandoned.
So once again, we get on our knees as we were taught. We begin to plead, beg, and ask over and over again. And when no answers come, His silence spurs more anguish rather than peace.
Six Vital Steps
But whether we face COVID-19 that attacks our body, or a virus that attacks our soul, a drastic change occurs, clarity begins, and faith increases when we follow these six steps:
- Readjust our priorities. If we seek the answer to our prayer with more passion than we seek God Himself, His patience rather than answers is what will be at work. “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. (Matthew 6:33)
- Resist the temptation to recite memorized, perfect prayers, with lovely words and deep insight. God simply wants the genuine expression of our heart. And most of all, “…when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.” (Matthew 6:7)
- Recognize that sometimes we don’t know how to pray or what our requests should be. So, we can freely ask for Him to show us what to pray for. And confident that He’s listening attentively, whisper to Him, “Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” (Psalm 139:23-24)
- Remember that His answer is always in His timing, not ours because a thousand years in God’s sight are like a day that has just gone by. (Psalm 90:4)
- Relish in the fact that while we wait, He’s working in us, in our heart, in our situation because, “We are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” (Ephesians 2:10)
- Remove anxious thoughts. In the silence of the moment and in the power of His presence, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” (Philippians 4:6)
Why follow these steps? Because “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him.” (1 John 5:14–15)
Father, thank You for showing me how to pray with the certainty that You are indeed watching, listening, and observing each step I take. Grant me the wisdom to recognize You are vigilant of my every move. In Jesus’ name.
How will you renew your trust in Almighty God to work in your situation?
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