“And he said unto them, This kind can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting” - Mark 9:29 (KJV).
In Uganda, at a certain point in her troubled history, the scariest thing in life was to meet a roadblock. Normally, you can’t penetrate from one point to the next, once you meet a roadblock. There are wrought with danger and anything can happen, including loss of life.
Road blocks can also be found in life, where one can’t proceed to the next level. Think of a person desirous for a job promotion. There can exist a roadblock in form of one person who persistently objects to the deserved promotion. Someone might desire to access a certain critical document or secure a certificate to move to another point, but a roadblock stands in the way.
Jesus encountered situations where people had faced roadblocks in life, There was once a man who had a child paralyzed with a crippling and demobilizing spirit (Mark 9:14-29). On seeing its havoc, as it threw the boy into a convulsion, Jesus asked the boy’s father, “How long has he been like this?” (vv 21). The boy’s father answered: “From childhood,” he answered. “It has often thrown him into fire or water to kill him. But if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us” (vv 22).
This father had a roadblock standing in his way. It is quite apparent that he had tried all manner of relief, perhaps spent some money elsewhere trying to find a cure. The roadblock stood tall and impenetrable. He certainly pleaded with the disciples who made some attempt, but to no avail. Finally the man got to Jesus. “When Jesus saw that a crowd was running to the scene, he rebuked the impure spirit. “You deaf and mute spirit,” he said, “I command you, come out of him and never enter him again” (25). At that moment the boy was healed.
Amazed that where they could not Jesus had silenced this spirit, the disciples asked him how. This is when he said that kind only goes away, “by prayer and fasting” (vv 29).
There are some roadblocks that come in our lives hindering us to progress to another level. We may try every effort known to us, yet to no avail. It may be of a spirit that can only be leveled down through “prayer and fasting!”
Prayer for today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, for that roadblock standing in my way, I overcome it now through “prayer and fasting,” just as you healed the crippled boy, this I pray in Jesus’s name!
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“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God”- (Philippians 4:6).
Perhaps you have heard of a certain old magical trade known as mind reading. According to this trade which has been around for millenniums and has its share of tricksters, mind readers are able to discern thought patterns of individuals before they even utter a word. There are places in the world where this, as expected, is a lucrative occupation, with practitioners, often crafty magicians, demanding hefty fees, just to tell thoughts of others.
As Christians, of course, we have an all knowing God, who has said, “Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him” ( Mathew 6:8). Further, our Lord has pointed out, “And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words” ( Mathew 6:7). As Christians when we come to God, we do so with full confidence, that He already knows our needs and will meet them according to his glorious riches in heaven.
Of particular interest for us here is that while God perfectly knows our needs before we even dare utter a single word, still it is incumbent upon us to make our requests known to Him. A parent may have long noticed a child has a need for a new pair of shoes; but it is another dimension, when the child does come out and share aloud that his pair is worn out, hurting and is quite in need of a new one. The parent takes notice, especially when the matter is presented with such conviction and urgency. This is why Hannah cried out to God for a child ( 1 Samuel 1:9-18).
In our relationship with God, as the Apostle Paul advises us, it is not just enough to assume and let matters be, that after all God knows all our needs, but we too bear a responsibility to make our requests known to Him. Once we are done with that, we let God do His part, allowing “the peace of God, which transcends all understanding” ( Philippians 4:7) to flood us.
So, today, do not hold back your needs from the Almighty God. He has paved the way to walk to Him through His son Jesus Christ, to present your case, bear out your heart’s desire, and let Him do His part!
Prayer today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, today I rise to make my requests known to you, knowing you have heard me even before I utter a single word, assured that you will meet each and every one of my needs, according to your glorious riches in heaven!