A simple prayer is often said and then forgotten. We lift them up in support of an immediate need. We surround a situation with the prayer request and move on to the next situation. Unless something profound happens, we assume nothing happened.
If we pay close attention we may notice God in the midst of a seemingly unanswered prayer. Two days before filling in for a pastor who was on vacation I came down with a raging head cold. My head was full of congestion and I was exhausted. I reached out to some friends and family to pray. I needed to be healthy and able to bring the message to this congregation in two days.
I woke up Saturday feeling minimally better. I was still praying and holding out hope. I didn’t want to leave the small church without anyone to lead worship and no notice. I continued to remind God of this situation and how necessary it was for me to healthy.
I woke up Sunday feeling markedly better. I still had a head full of congestion and knew I was contagious. I dug out a mask and off I went. When I arrived, I let them know the situation. I could mask, stay at a distance from everyone and lead worship or I could leave. If it was their preference that I leave, I would have without offense. They said stay.
The sound of my voice made it very clear to everyone I was not healthy. At the end of the service I put the cordless microphone on the pulpit and told the sound tech to let it sit there for a couple of days before touching it. He chuckled and said, “Good idea.” When I got in my car, it hit me. I had not coughed, sneezed or blown my nose the entire time I was in the church.
But Jesus was matter-of-fact: “Yes—and if you embrace this kingdom life and don’t doubt God, you’ll not only do minor feats like I did to the fig tree, but also triumph over huge obstacles. This mountain, for instance, you’ll tell, ‘Go jump in the lake,’ and it will jump. Absolutely everything, ranging from small to large, as you make it a part of your believing prayer, gets included as you lay hold of God.” (Matthew 21:21-22 MSG).
God had answered a simple prayer. I was able to minimally spread germs and had enough stamina to get through the service. I didn’t get a healing, but I was able to still serve. I almost missed it. How often do I miss small encounters with God because they seem simple or ordinary?
How has God answered a simple prayer for you? What helps you notice them? Share your experience here and breathe life and bring hope to others.