Prayer with Legs
These last few weeks Dr. Young has continued to preach from the Book of James. The sermons have been incredible for me. He has spoken so many things that the Lord has used to touch my heart and remind me how blessed and thankful we are, even in our current circumstances, as we push on and seek joy without our precious second son.
Last week Dr. Young spoke on James 2 and faith and good works. It has always been something that has left me a little uncomfortable because I KNOW that we are saved through the blood of Jesus Christ and his death and resurrection... but I also know that works play into this equation and I could never fit it just right. Kind of like a puzzle and I couldn't get that little piece in correctly... I kept looking at it, studying it... but it never seem to fit and without the piece, the puzzle was incomplete. Well, thankfully he cleared that all up for me two Sundays ago.
He spoke about how we are justified by our faith in Jesus Christ and how our salvation (spending eternity with Him in Heaven) is sealed in that moment. But, if we truly want to live the life Christ is asking of us, our lives must bear fruit. We must live according to His Word, allowing our lives to reflect the love He has for us, through works. Works are the outward demonstration, or fruit, of our intimate walk with him, living according to His will and His Word... without those works, our faith is essentially dead. "As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead." James 2:26
Dr. Young then began to give an example of this and spoke about how often we tell people we are praying for them... that is AWESOME! Everyone loves to hear that they are being prayed for and lifted up to the Lord... However, sometimes the Lord calls us to more than just prayer. He calls us to take action based on the knowledge that He has given to us about a certain need or certain situation. Sometimes, in those situations, when we tell people that we are praying, but know instead that there is more that could be done, we aren't being obedient. Faith is obedience and as Dr. Young put it, sometimes "prayer without legs must be an abomination to God." He has given us the wisdom and insight to see a need, and yet many times we chose to ignore it.
Well, I am here to tell each of you, personally, individually... that you have been obedient to the call that the Lord has placed on you. You have faithfully prayed for our family...but your prayers have also had legs. You have brought meals. You attended the benefit for our family in memory of Maddox. You have helped us financially with medical and funeral costs. You have donated in Maddox's memory to NILMDTS, The Trisomy 18 Foundation, the March of Dimes. You have sent gifts. You have sent cards of loving, encouraging words. You have commented on this blog. You have called. You have emailed. YOU HAVE ABSOLUTELY SURROUNDED US~ and all we can do is thank you.
There seems to be no possible way to individually thank each one of you, and even if it were possible (as I told some of my friends), words wouldn't be nearly adequate. We are so grateful for your support, for your love, for your friendship, the financial help, the meals, and most importantly for your prayers! A speaker recently stated, God is not good because of my present or lasting circumstances, He is good because He is faithful. Let me tell you... He has been so faithful to us and we are blessed.
Interestingly, that same speaker also said this: God is more interested in changing my heart than changing my circumstances. As much as I prayed that Maddox would be healed this side of Heaven, my Heavenly Father knew that instead of changing Maddox's condition, He could simply change my heart. It was a win-win. Maddox would spend eternity with Him, and I would be renewed... and for some reason, He knew that Dusty and I would be found faithful to walk this road He has laid out. He gave me a new heart for those hurting and grieving over the death of a child. He gave me a new heart for precious children with special needs. He gave me a new heart for everyday miracles... He gave me a new heart to be totally dependent on Him! I pray that He will continue to find me, to find each of us, faithful in our walk forward with Him.
"The Lord directs our steps, so why try to understand everything along the way?"- Proverbs 20:24