“The power of God and the potency of prayer”

Today was just one of those days. You know what I’m talking about, they just mysteriously happen. Perhaps something to do with alignment of the planets or weather, but you just wake up grumpy, have a hearty breakfast but it does nothing for you. You go see your favorite people, the ones that usually make you smile and laugh, but you are unfilled. You finally have the rest of a day to spend with your loved one, and it just wasn’t as fun as you thought it would be. Thoughts of just getting the day done with and over, and try to start new tomorrow morning are frequent. Perhaps the best way to describe it is, funk! I’m just in a funk…not funky. No sir, not feeling funky, just a funk has come over me. Don’t try to pretend you don’t know what I’m talking about…I think its human to go through this….

…but how you react to this, makes all the difference in the world!!

It would be my guess that others, like me, when they’re in this “funk” start asking questions that are not fun, but if you haven’t asked them before, are vital to your happiness. Questions like “what will I do today?”, or “why did I chose this way of life?”, or even “why am I alive, what’s my purpose, am I to work a 9-5 job until I die or retire and lose my mind?” These times that we go through are vital, and how we go through them are even more so!

A great counselor, writer, and pastor named D. Martin Lloyd-Jones, once wrote regarding depression “the oxymoronic ability for a believer to be depressed, is their inability to preach to themselves, and their ability to live off their feelings” [paraphrased]. If our whole worldview is based on something as subjective as our feelings, our lives will amount to nothing more than a series of roller-coaster rides, and at that, may even have the ability to fall off our rails. Think about it, what are our feelings based on, or influenced by…things that surround us. Circumstance, health, weather, activities, and other peoples sentiments towards us. We can’t control this, as much as we may try to.

I’ll be honest!! I want to be happy! I want constant satisfying joy! I want to be known perfectly, I don’t want my wife to have to guess as to what’s going on with me (though she is VERY good at that…she must know me in some part I guess). I want to be able to shake myself out of every funk I find myself trapped in! When I compare what I can do, what I’ve done, to where I want to be….I find myself completely lacking in skill to get there. The fact of the matter is, I fail sometimes. So how do I get there. Let me tell you a story:

I went on a solo backpack trip in the Appalachian Mountains once and I forgot my headlamp. I went to the mountains a little nervous knowing there were bears, wolves, and creatures who could easily prey on my tender white flesh if they wanted to, especially being alone, but confident as to where I was going. When it came to evening time, and light was slowly fading, I found myself not too sure where I was, where my campground would be, or if the skies would stay clear for me (I didn’t have a tent…I chose to be under the stars to sleep). If I had let my emotions take the best of me, some poor guy would have found me running through the forest and screaming for help like I had just met Saskwatch or something. But I had to preach to myself, coach myself into truth….I had to tell myself “If God is in control of everything right now, if he is not done with his plans for me, if he can shut the mouths of bears and wolves (like he did for Daniel in the lions den), THEN my God will look out for me.”

So too today I have found myself altogether hard-pressed to find something with super-natural strength to bring me out of this funk. I found myself praying, praying to the one who always listens, who always knows my state of emotion before I tell him. I found my answer in a facebook post that basically encouraged me with a truth of God, and a caution against a lie from the devil. That’s how it is isn’t it! No matter how I FEEL, the truth of God stands firm, but the lies of the evil will try shake the foundation of that truth. Right now, as I write this, I am a son of God adopted to His family by His will, I am co-heirs with Christ not in this world but in the world to come as well, I have a Father who has provisioned every good thing for me before I could think of them.

The word says in Psalms “In my presence there is joy, in my right there is pleasure forevermore” I want that!! You know what, I can’t find that in a calming cup of tea, a glass of wine, in comedy, in chocolate, in delightful friends, or even in my wife! I must press into my Fathers heart and delight in Him in order to find what I’ve been looking for all along! The place where joy and relationship with my maker perfectly mingles!!

I want to mention one more thing. There was one more instance when I was in a funk, it was ruining Emily and I’s day, she didn’t know how to handle me, I didn’t know what I myself was going through. Something sudden happened, and the next instant a weight was lifted off my heart. I felt new, and wonderfully suprised! My immediate next thought for some reason was….”somebody prayed for me.” I turned to Emily and said, “Emily did you just pray for me?” She calmly looked at me, smiled and nodded. We both then just marveled at how God’s Spirit works between us! God impressed Emily to pray for me, and BOOM like that, it was effectual. Ladies, don’t forget to pray for your husbands, and husbands likewise your wives. Prayer is probably one of the most effectual disciplines and is probably the one thing we do the least. God bless you all….and good night!

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