Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Let's Not Weary of Doing Good

That is a pretty tall order from the book of Galations (6:9) if you suffer from a chronic pain condition such as Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue, or Rheumatoid Arthritis. Since today (5/12) is National Fibromyalgia Awareness Day, it’s appropriate to examine believers who suffer each and every day of their lives. The apostle, Paul, entreats all of us to never weary of doing good. So how do you follow his commandment when you’re in pain constantly?

If there is one thing that saps your energy and motivation more than constant body-wide pain, I don’t know about it. It’s a dangerously self-absorbing condition, too. You begin to think, “How can I minister to others when I can barely take care of myself?”

How would you answer God if He asked you about your weariness in doing good? Would you say, “Lord, you understand why I am mostly home bound, don’t go on mission trips, or attend church regularly”? Would you say, “Until you heal me, Lord, I can’t be of use to the Kingdom of God”? Would you say, “I’ll just wait until the medical profession comes up with a cure before I become your good and faithful servant”?

All of these responses leave out the most extravagant gift of service you can give to any person—prayer! No matter where you are or in what condition or circumstances, a believer’s spiritual heartbeats can always turn his/her heart toward prayer.

I recently saw on a church marquee these words, “If you are having trouble standing, fall to your knees.” How often we excuse our absence from God’s good works by omitting prayer. As Americans we are somehow conditioned to think delivering a meal, manual labor, or a trip to needy believers is required. Our heavenly Father is much more pleased with personal communion than any work we might do.

Stop today and think about praying for your neighbors, your church members, your church pastors and staff, your city officials, your state governing body and their assistants, and your national leaders and Cabinet members. Nothing great in the history of God and man was ever accomplished without the fervent prayer of at least one believer. In many instances, whole bodies of believers were asked to fast and pray.

List now from memory some of the extravagant and seemingly impossible prayers recorded in the Bible that resulted in God’s power being displayed. Remember, even a feeble and frightened person can pray.

Meditate on Christ’s prayer of anguish in the Garden of Gethsemane as he sweat drops of blood from the strain of knowing his torture and death were near at hand. In Christ’s most painful, last moments on the cross, He was still talking with His Father in heaven. Yes, it is a tall order to simultaneously suffer and supplicate for others.