Yesterday, I sat in a luncheon with about 20-25 other youth pastors and various Christian community types of people. There were some YWAM (Youth With A Mission) people there, some 88.1 FM radio voices there, and people like that. I was invited by Dr. James Anderson, who is quickly becoming one of my heroes.
We spent some time eating (of course) and chatting, and then singing, and then praying. The main thrust of the sharing and the praying was toward the issue of unity in the body of Christ in the Richmond area. Passionate prayers were uttered, calling out to God for unity among His people, so that revival and the mighty movement of His Spirit would be evident in our ministries to the place God has called us and placed us. Good stuff.
Now, don’t think I’m being egotistical. But as we prayed together, I was thinking, (did you ever think about something when someone else is praying?) “I’m the answer to these prayers.”
Why would I be so big-headed about my own importance? Simple. Because Jesus told me to. Read it for yourself:
“The glory which You have given Me I have given to them, that they may be one, just as We are one;…”
This statement was spoken by Jesus in what we know as “the high priestly prayer”. Jesus was speaking to God the Father about His disciples then and His disciples now.
So, while its all well and good for us to pray for unity, I really believe that there are some prayers that we’ve just got to realize the power that God has given us, and the expectation that God has put upon us to live out the answer to that prayer!
What would happen if I went to that luncheon, participated whole-heartedly in that prayer time and sharing time, and then walked out the door, never to reach out, never to do my part, never to strive for unity with those fellow pastors?
If one of you says to him, “Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it?”
This verse, found in James 2:16 clearly shows us that while prayer is so vital to our spiritual lives, we must understand the expectations that God has for us to live out His love to those around us–EVERYONE around us. Whether they are rich or poor, liked or unliked, right or wrong, white or black, Christian or not.
So, its true: I’M the answer to my own prayer in this instance. And not just me, but YOU are too.