With the threat of another hurricane on the way, and seeing the destruction that one has just brought, it’s not too hard to understand why the grocery store shelves are empty, gas station lines are long, and folks are making every preparation they can, even evacuating in some areas. It is an understandable notion to ‘be prepared.’ So, how is it that we can see the need for preparation (or else endure the consequences), yet be so blind to such spiritual ideas?
Let me say first, “Pray!” Pray earnestly before another hurricane makes landfall. All too often we make the physical preparations but wait until devastation has occurred to pray for those that have suffered. After Harvey, you couldn’t scroll through Facebook without seeing posts asking for prayer, or updated profile pictures in support of Texas. Now… by all means, please don’t misunderstand — yes, this is great! But, can’t we do more than just pray after the fact?
With the technology today, we have a pretty good amount of time to make the necessary preparations before a hurricane makes landfall. Why don’t we prepare spiritually in the same manner? We already know that the enemy, Satan, has come to steal, kill and destroy, yet we wait until something happens before we ask for prayer!
1 Thessalonians 5:17 tell us to “Pray without ceasing.” Ehpesians 6:18 says “Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.”
We need to live in a state of awareness. ‘Now’ is the time to come together and pray for those in need, give what we can to help, and even go to help if we are physically able. But let us remember, that when the sky is blue, and the threat of the storms have passed, that there is still no time to waste in praying for, and helping one another. We need to make it a way of life, not just a reaction to catastrophe.
It’s time the church begins to act proactively, instead of reacting to whatever happens! Let us pray today, before Irma touches Florida. Have we asked God to turn it, slow it down, destroy it… or anything? In the same way, do we pray for our worship services before Sunday arrives? Do we pray for children’s church and the youth groups before attendance falls off? Do we ask the Lord for traveling mercy before we’ve been in an accident? Are our lost loved ones constantly on our minds and their names on our lips as with lift their name in prayer?
Let us be mindful of the power we posses, through Jesus Christ, in prayer! It is a powerful weapon meant to be used. Through Calvary, Jesus made a way for you and I to come boldly before the throne of God. Please don’t cast aside this privilege that was given through the death of God’s son! He not only paid our sin debt, but tore the veil that had separated us from directly coming before the Father. Starting this day, let us pray for peace before a riot, safety before an accident, salvation before death, health before sickness, and God’s presence before a service! God bless you all!
Rev. Cathleen N. Cathcart is pastor of New Life Worship Center in Spartanburg.