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Troubled by Nothing
by Dennis Downing
“When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him.” (Matthew 2:3 RSV)

    How many times have we been “troubled” by God?

    When you hear of a plan or project, there is a simple test to know how much of it is really in God’s will. Ask yourself — how much has this been prayed about? How much is prayer being made the foundation, the first and final step? Are we moving in this direction or carrying out this plan because we can afford it, because it is a good thing to do? Or, are we pursuing this because after seeking God’s answer at great length we are utterly convinced that this is what He most wants?

Few are interested in the truth.
    It may well be that the greatest proof of who is really in control of our hearts is not in a “successful” work. The greatest proof may well be found in our reaction to utter “failure.” At times “failure” may be the very means by which the will of God is done. Some plans may well succeed because they are God’s will. And others, apparently “successful,” may well be our will, with God’s name scribbled on it.

    In Christ we will surely one day be surprised at the great things He has done through simple people, minor events, and seemingly insignificant acts, all of them bound to Jesus through prayer. Nothing should trouble us, except the nothing of which we so often seem to make so much. And if it is God’s will, we should seek even failure with a passion, if it will bring us closer to Jesus. Finally, somehow, his will may indeed be done through us. Quite possibly, we may not even be aware of it at the time. At times, that may even be the key to his will being done in us.

QUOTE: “For apart from me you can do nothing.” John 15:5b

PRAYER: Oh Father, like Herod, many in positions of authority are not praying over their plans and their works. If they are not praying for your guidance, oh Lord, then those who have come to know your power and authority should be all the more constant in intercession on their behalf. In the church we need your help as well. Help us to learn to enter your presence empty handed and to leave with only that which you have sent us out to do. Help us to rediscover the mystery and the power of those seemingly minor acts through which a Kingdom has been steadily rising throughout all eternity. May the glory ever be Yours. Amen.


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