Bethel Baptist Church
Worship Service @ Home
13 March 2022
Service available on Youtube, or as text (below), or for audio see the Podcasts page.
Let us continue to pray for an end to the war in Ukraine.
The grapes looked luscious on the vine, ripe and ready to eat. Jesus said, ‘‘I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15:5). If we remain in Him and continue to seek Him faithfully and diligently He will continue to produce the fruit of the Holy Spirit in us, Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, and self-control.
When our prayers are unanswered
Psalm 23 begins, “The Lord is my Shepherd, I lack nothing …” but we might not think that when He doesn’t answer our prayers. However, the Lord always answers our prayers as we learnt in Sunday School with the Traffic Light illustration,
Stop; Wait; Go = No! Wait! Yes!
And even when He gives us a “no” answer it is always for the best, He is always working something positive and for our eternal blessing. Remember Jesus prayed “Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as You will”. As a result of Jesus taking up that cup there is the offer of salvation for a lost world. Let us look at the 3 answers:
The Lord said “No” three times to one of the Apostle Paul’s prayers,
Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.2 Cor. 12:8-9
As a result of this “No” answer to his prayers Paul learned more about the mysteries of God’s ways at times and therefore, was going to grow more spiritually. From agonising and pleading in prayer he went on to delight in the Lord even though he received a “No” answer. Go through some of the “No” answers you have received in times past. Can you now rejoice in the Lord because of them? Billy Graham’s wife Ruth once said, “If God had answered her prayers when she was young, she would’ve married the wrong man several times”.
Abraham had received a ‘Yes’ answer to his prayers, but what a long wait he had before they were finally answered and Sarah gave birth to a son. And along the way the Lord had to remind him:
Is anything too hard for the Lord? I will return to you at the appointed time next year, and Sarah will have a son.Gen. 18:14
It was the same with Zechariah and Elizabeth, a prayer they had undoubtedly prayed in their younger years, and possibly forgotten about or given up on, was suddenly answered when they were both “very old”. Review some of your prayers of by-gone years – they might not be “No” prayers but “Wait” prayers.
What a joy when our prayers are answered and be open to Him …
… who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.Eph. 3:20-21
Quote of the week
”You may as soon find a living man without breath as a living saint without prayer”
Verse of the week
And pray in the Spirit on all occasions, with all kinds of prayer and requests.Eph. 6:18
Our gracious loving Heavenly Father, do more, much more than all we have prayed, or imagined in the Ukraine. Father God bring an end to all this evil. Father protect this nation in miraculous ways against the onslaught of this Goliath, in Jesus Christ’s Name, Amen!