Calling Upon God

Psalm 145:17-21 (NASB)
17 The Lord is righteous in all His ways
And kind in all His deeds.
18 The Lord is near to all who call upon Him,
To all who call upon Him in truth.
19 He will fulfill the desire of those who fear Him;
He will also hear their cry and will save them.
20 The Lord keeps all who love Him,
But all the wicked He will destroy.
21 My mouth will speak the praise of the Lord,
And all flesh will bless His holy name forever and ever.

How often have you called upon the Lord in the last week? If you are like many other believers, you are probably calling on the Lord many times throughout the day. I always try to give thanks and praise to God before I begin giving Him my requests, but I often fail. While God certainly does want and desire our praise and thankfulness, He also wants us to call upon Him, so that He can show us His amazing love and His awesome power to change circumstances in our lives. The important thing to remember is that God is near! Most people imagine God to be so far removed from their daily lives, but the reality is that God is very close, and He is waiting for us to trust Him and call upon him, so that he can release His life altering power to us, through His Holy Spirit.

Often the circumstances of this world tend to drag us down. When that happens, we really have two choices. Do we follow the ways of the world and allow sin to take over our life and lead us farther away from God? Or do difficult times give us the resolve to focus our prayer life upon God and pray for His presence to guide us? Psalm 145 tells us that not only does God hear those who “call upon Him in truth,” but God will “also hear their cry and will save them.” God wants to lift you up out of the difficult circumstance that you are in if you will only trust Him and call upon His name in truth. Don’t let the world tell you that God can’t do what God promises to do. Trust God, go to Him in prayer, and ask Him to save you from whatever difficult circumstances, life sends your way. God is righteous, He will hear your cry, and He will save you! He will do all these things because He loves you!

What do you need God to save you or deliver you from? Are you battling an addiction problem that only God can completely heal? Are you struggling with a relationship problem that seems impossible to solve? Are you a new Christian struggling to let go of your old way of life? Do you have a health issue that has you worried and concerned? Do you have children or grandchildren that have you anxious and troubled? Is your job dragging you down and causing you to fear the future? Whatever you are struggling with, turn those worries over to God and allow Him to transform your life.  God can lead you away from the dark and worrisome aspects of your life and lead you into the light of His healing power.

If you are feeling broken and defeated, I have good news for you! Fall to your knees and go to God in prayer right now, and ask for God to come near to you and give you what you need to cope with whatever your struggle in life may be. God wants us to depend upon Him and to seek Him with all our heart, soul, and mind. And when we do, our loving and merciful God will hear our cry and He will save us. Praise be unto God for His mercy and His lovingkindness to those of us who call upon Him and love Him!

 

Do Not Be Afraid Any Longer

“Do not be afraid any longer, only believe.” (Based on Mark 5:21-43)

Mark 5:36 (NASB): But Jesus, overhearing what was being spoken, said to the synagogue official, “Do not be afraid any longer, only believe.”

Jarius was a synagogue official who had heard about Jesus. It’s not surprising that he had heard about him because news about Jesus was spreading rapidly. Crowds were coming from Galilee, Jerusalem and Judea, just to get a glimpse of Jesus. People were coming in droves from beyond the Jordan and from regions that were a considerable distance away, hoping for a healing touch that would forever change their lives. Little did they know that Jesus could heal them in ways more than just a physical healing. To those who would only believe and accept Him as their Lord and Savior, Jesus offered the free gift of salvation and eternal life. Could the people even imagine the kind of life that Jesus could offer? A “new” life that would be free from the pain, suffering and fear that was present in their world.

Jarius had an overwhelming problem that propelled him straight to Jesus; his little twelve year old daughter was near the point of death. Jarius must have heard about the many miraculous healings that Jesus was performing and he knew that this encounter with Jesus represented his daughter’s only chance to live.

When Jarius came upon Jesus, there at Capernaum, he literally “fell at His feet” and he began to implore Jesus to come to his house and to “lay Your hands on her, so that she will get well and live.” Just seeing Jesus and the hope that He represented drove this man to his knees!  Luke writes about this man’s encounter with Jesus, and neither he nor Mark comment on what Jesus initially thought about this man’s faith.  It appears that Jarius had some amount of faith, because both gospel writers tell us that Jesus was willing to follow Jarius to his house, where the man’s daughter lay dying.

Jesus is delayed for a while because of the crowds and the throngs of people so desperately desiring a healing. And before he can arrive at the man’s house, they came from the house of the synagogue official saying, “Your daughter has died; why trouble the Teacher anymore?” To the people bringing this sad news, and probably to Jarius, it seemed that all hope was lost. The little girl had died and nothing was going to bring her back. And then Jesus silences everyone by speaking these words: “Do not be afraid any longer, only believe.”

And we know that Jesus brings this girl back to life, and Peter, James, John and the girl’s parents are witnesses to this amazing miracle.

What do you need to not be afraid of any longer?
• Fear of failure
• Lack of money
• Job frustrations
• Health issues
• Concern for children or grandchildren
• Violence in the world today
• Growing old
• Telling others about Christ

If there is something in your life that you fear, Jesus is saying to you today, “Do not be afraid any longer, only believe.” Jesus is there for you and He is more than willing to help you conquer any and all of your fears. If you will only focus your heart and mind upon Jesus, you won’t have to spend your time worrying about things that Jesus can handle for you. Jesus has already overcome the sin of this world and the fear and sense of hopelessness that so many people feel in their lives today. Go to God in prayer right now, and ask in the name of Jesus, for Him to take away your fears and give you the strength and faith to not be afraid any longer. And all you have to do is believe!