As part of our simple serve meals, we’ve been discussing simple ways that we can practically serve those around us. Prayer has been a strategy that has come up multiple times. Through the work of Jesus, God has graciously opened the door for us to have direct communication with Him. He has made the way, invites us, and even promises to hear us when we pray. Although this act is simple, it is the most significant way that we can serve someone. In and through prayer, we bring someone directly to the throne of the One who is able and must intervene on their behalf. We can point to Jesus by performing loving acts of sacrifice and giving but, ultimately, we cannot change a heart or provide as needed. Only the Lord can deliver and prayer calls on Him to do just that.
Recently, we were at one of our favorite pizza spots in Ebensburg. Although I have been encouraged and convicted to do so, I don’t always remember to reach out to serve our waiters or waitresses by praying. This particular night though, it was on my heart and mind so, when asked, “Is there anything else I can do for you?” I simply responded, “Well, we’re about to pray. Is there anything that we can pray for you?” To my surprise, the young lady replied, “No, but can I stay with you while you pray?” I definitely wasn’t expecting that but the Lord used her request as a way to remind me of the ministry that He has invited us to as followers of Christ. In 1 Peter 3:18, Peter instructs us that Christ died so that He might bring us to God. Our greatest good and greatest gain is only found in the Lord. There is no way that we could earn, work, or make our way to God. All of our attempts fall short of Him and His standard for us. Jesus said Himself, “No one comes to the Father but through Me.” Our forgiveness, our eternal life, our joy in God is all found through this greatest act of service: Jesus’ saving work of bringing us to God. In turning from our sin and trusting in Him, we enjoy the fullness of this gift. The presence of the Spirit indwells us today and we have a home with the Father that awaits us.
As we wait that day, we are given a ministry of bringing people too. Our acts can’t save people. We can’t serve someone into the Kingdom but we can bring them to see the One who can. We can bring them to Jesus who has already done the work necessary to bring them to God. As I said, He can save or provide as needed. At the restaurant table that night we got a picture of what this ministry looks like. In praying together, we invited her to see what it means to be rescued and have a relationship with Him. In a way, we brought her to Jesus and for that moment at least, she wanted to be brought. I pray that this work has been finished in her heart and I also pray that the Lord would lead and direct us in the days ahead of even more ways that we can pray, point, and bring people to Jesus, who is more than able to bring them the rest of the way to God.
Praying To Bring People To Jesus, Pastor Rudy