On his way to Jerusalem in his ministry actually,
Jesus passed by the border between Samaria and Galilee.
There he met some lepers numbering ten,
In that village he healed them, amen!
They called Jesus from a distance afar,
Hoping to be healed of each leprous scar.
“Jesus, master, have pity on us!”
In their misery they called out to Him thus.
Upon Christ’s word to their priest they all went,
As they walked they got healed with no lament.
One of those cleansed did greatly rejoice,
And came back praising God in a loud voice.
He was the only one of the ten lepers who returned,
To give thanks to the Lord as Jesus had discerned.
The Lord Jesus questioned this Samaritan who became fine,
As to where were all the other nine?
For the Lord Jesus heals because he is faithful,
And expects those healed to be grateful.
Remember Jesus to the Leper did solemnly tell,
“Rise and go: your faith had made you well.”
Bible reference : Gospel of St Luke 17:1-19
I thank you O Lord God, for sending your only begotten son Jesus Christ, to save me. Thank you for his earthly ministry and heavenly intercession. Thank you for each blessing, we have received through him. I’m grateful to Jesus, for being obedient unto death because he wanted to free me from sin and the grave. Thanks be to the Holy Spirit, for leading me into the things of the Kingdom of God. I pray that you open my spiritual eyes, to be more aware of all the good things you have done, so I give you even more praise. I ask this in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen
- I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living. (Psalm 27:13)
- O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him (Psalm 34:8)
(A forwarded message)
A Minister passing through his church in the middle of the day decided to pause by the altar to see who came to pray.
Just then the back door opened, and a man came down the aisle,
The minister frowned as he saw the man hadn’t shaved in a while.
His shirt was torn and shabby, and his coat was worn and frayed,
The man knelt down and bowed his head, then rose and walked away.
In the days that followed at precisely noon, the preacher saw this chap,
Each time he knelt just for a moment, a lunch pail in his lap.
Well, the minister’s suspicions grew, with robbery a main fear,
He decided to stop and ask the man, ‘What are you doing here?’
The old man said he was a factory worker and lunch was half an hour
Lunchtime was his prayer time, for finding strength and power.
I stay only a moment because the factory’s far away;
As I kneel here talking to the Lord, this is kind of what I say:
‘I Just Came By To Tell You, Lord, How Happy I Have Been,
Since We Found Each Other’s Friendship And You Took Away My Sin.
Don’t Know Much Of How To Pray, But I Think About You Every day.
So, Jesus, This Is Ben, Just Checking In Today.’
The minister feeling foolish, Told Ben that it was fine.
He told the man that he was welcome to pray there anytime.
‘It’s time to go, and thanks,’ Ben said as he hurried to the door.
Then the minister knelt there at the altar, which he’d never done before.
His heart melted, warmed with love, as he met with Jesus there.
As the tears flowed down his cheeks, He repeated old Ben’s prayer:
‘I Just Came By To Tell You, Lord, How Happy I’ve Been,
Since We Found Each Other’s Friendship and You Took Away My Sin.
I Don’t Know Much Of How To Pray, But I Think About You Every day.
So, Jesus, This Is Me, Just Checking In Today.’
Past noon one day, the minister noticed that old Ben hadn’t come.
As more days passed and still no Ben, He began to worry some.
At the factory, he asked about him, learning he was ill.
The hospital staff was worried, But he’d given them a thrill.
The week that Ben was with them, Brought changes in the ward.
His smiles and joy contagious. Changed people were his reward.
The head nurse couldn’t understand why Ben could be so glad,
When no flowers, calls or cards came, not a visitor he had.
The minister stayed by his bed, He voiced the nurse’s concern:
No friends had come to show they cared. He had nowhere to turn.
Looking surprised, old Ben spoke up and with a winsome smile;
‘The nurse is wrong, she couldn’t know, He’s been here all the while.’
Every day at noon He comes here, a dear friend of mine, you see,
He sits right down and takes my hand, Leans over and says to me:
‘I Just Came By To Tell You, Ben, How Happy I Have Been,
Since We Found This Friendship, And I Took Away Your Sin.
I Think About You Always And I Love To Hear You Pray,
And So Ben, This Is Jesus, Just Checking In Today.’
If this blesses you, pass it on. Many people will walk in and out of your life, but only true friends will leave footprints in your heart…
May God hold you in the palm of His hand And Angels watch over you.
So, FRIENDS & FAMILY, this is ME …”Just Checking In Today”
Recently I happened to meet a preacher who went a long rant about people who came to his church, got their miracles and then stopped coming to his preaching services. Here’s one such real life example he keeps facing; people who are unemployed came to him for prayers. Then those people get jobs by getting trough the job interviews. These people didn’t earlier get jobs for months. They then come to testify in church, in front of the entire congregation as to how after being prayed over by the preacher, they received their blessings from God and have so got a great paying job. Fast forward this to like three months later and the preacher then observed that many of these who received their jobs miraculously are nowhere to be seen at the church services. In fact now the very jobs they got blessed with are cited as reasons for not attending church, pathetic! This preacher was visibly upset for a moment when he mentioned this challenge he faced but yet after that kept praying for others who are in need of jobs etc.
Then there’s a thing that I too faced. I’d pray for people and they’d get married and but then reduce their church attendance, while there are many other couples who do attend church even after marriage. They then will avoid any religious seminars and guess what; being married is cited as the reason for that. Then few years later when the child is born and is sick, they are in ‘need’ of me for prayers. Only out of concern for the child do I pray for his or her well-being and they recover. After that if I try to contact the parents, they again go non responsive. Utterly ungrateful and opportunistic people!
Due to this, I later on modified my strategy towards such people. Basically, first identify such people and pray for discernment. Then don’t help unless explicitly asked for in a non ambiguous manner. And only then help as usual but expect them to not be grateful later on. So don’t invest too much into them. Instead go on to help the next person God sends in your life.
So what’s my point?
My point is don’t be selfish after getting your blessings. Firstly, honour the Lord God and don’t miss out on praying to him and loving him. Secondly, have regard towards those who prayed for you in your suffering. Thirdly, remember that miracles are not for your selfish agendas but for the glory of God. Finally, don’t make your blessings as an excuse to neglect coming to church nor an as excuse to reduce praying and avoid reading the Bible.
Now to people who still think all they need is a blessing and then disappear from doing their responsibility towards God, well I have bad news for you. You can try to give all the reasons you want but the Lord God knows the deceitful and the good right from the heart. The maker of all hearts knows really well how to judge them and obviously there is a Final judgement that will soon happen. And just to let you know, not every preacher will allow you to take them for granted. Even myself made a strategy as mentioned above. But let share just one strategy which another set of preachers use; don’t grant the miracle unless the person shows interest in continuing in the Word God. Rude as this strategy sounds to the selfish of heart, the good of heart don’t mind this at all.
Let me make it real to you. At a preaching convention, there was a woman in need of a miracle for her baby. Now this preaching was residential over a span of five days. This woman was desperate and was only looking for the preacher to lay hands on the baby so that her child recovers and then she’d immediately leave the convention half way. Signs were already showing up. She was skipping prayers and mentioning the baby as the reason. Arriving late in the preaching hall and citing the baby as the reason. Keeping on saying that she has things at home to attend to and what not. At the time of healing prayers the preacher felt the power of God at work. He prayed and a lot of people received their healing. Now that woman came to him for praying for her baby. But he realized in his mind that if he grants her the healing she will immediately leave the place. So he told her to wait till the final day of the convention. She was reluctant but had no choice.
Before any of you think what that preacher did wrong, please continue to observe what happened next. The preacher kept preaching the Word of God in its fullness and emphasized on believing in the Gospel, repentance from sins, faith for life etc. These are very vital topics in the life of a believer in Christ. Now on the fifth day the woman went back to the preacher and asked him to pray over her baby and this time he asked the Lord God to heal the baby of so and so disease. The moment the woman realized her child is healed she immediately made an excuse in the name of the baby and left the convention. The preacher was smart enough to call her only at the last minutes of the convention. He said he didn’t lack mercy towards the baby but knew in advance that the woman was more interested in the miracle than hearing the Word of God if the baby was healed first. Because he prayed that the baby’s health won’t worsen in those five days but only that the healing would occur last day.
Now, I myself don’t use his method about praying for people but I do get his point loud and clear; some people once they receive their miracle may make excuses to avoid hearing the Gospel, so do whatever you can to stop that.
My advice to those preaching and healing others in the name of Jesus Christ, would be that don’t let people treat you like an MVM. Some people incorrectly feel that they are entitled to all the time and efforts of those who pray for others and they don’t feel grateful towards them. Don’t be an MVM but a true minister of the Word of God. Be a pleaser of God instead of the people.
You might ask what is a “MVM”. It’s called as a Miracle Vending Machine. So again for those preaching healing in Jesus’ name, please remember that miracles are secondary and the glory to God comes first. Ensure that you explain the love and mercy of God as mentioned in Gospel and then pray for healing and miracles for those who come to you. And tell those people who might think the job they will get is due to their own ability then why are they asking you to pray for them? You can also tell them if they want a good spouse in marriage then why are they expecting you to fast for them but themselves don’t want to fast? Obviously, you don’t need to blunt too much but at the same time don’t be anyone’s door mat either especially when you know the gift of healing and miracles are not yours to claim fame for but are of God’s alone who is working through you.
Christ be with you!
Thank you very much indeed,
River, for your waving reed;
Hollyhocks, for budding knobs;
Foxgloves, for your velvet fobs;
Pansies, for your silky cheeks;
Chaffinches, for singing beaks;
Spring, for wood anemones
Near the mossy toes of trees;
Summer, for the fruited pear,
Yellowing crab, and cherry fare;
Autumn, for the bearded load,
Hazelnuts along the road;
Winter, for the fairy-tale,
Spitting log and bouncing hail.
But, blest Father, high above,
All these joys are from Thy love;
And Your children everywhere,
Born in palace, lane, or square,
Cry with voices all agreed,
“Thank You very much indeed.”
-by Norman R Gale (1862 – 1942)
I remember a young man at church. He would avoid coming for times of prayer and worship. However, the moment his mother would fall ill, he’d attend every possible instance of group prayer. But when his mother would recover in the hospital, he’d again go back to his delusion self and avoid coming to church. Then again his mother would fall seriously unwell and he’d come again to praying very hard. This happened multiple times over. The Lord God is merciful and kept saving this young man’s dear one despite this man’s shortcomings. I used to then ponder on this and realize that the Lord is indeed good.
Usually on hearing such things, people will praise God’s faithfulness and I know that it’s the right thing to do. However, people must also understand that they cannot mistake God’s mercy as an excuse to not pray to him!
Some people misjudge their capacity for acquiring wealth as solely their own genius. Other’s feel they are special so they get miracles. Both of these ways of thinking are not consistent with the teachings of the Bible.
17 Beware lest you say in your heart, ‘My power and the might of my hand have gotten me this wealth.’ 18 You shall remember the Lord your God, for it is he who gives you power to get wealth, that he may confirm his covenant that he swore to your fathers, as it is this day. 19 And if you forget the Lord your God and go after other gods and serve them and worship them, I solemnly warn you today that you shall surely perish. (Deuteronomy 8:17-19)
There are people who mistake the Lord for a miracle vending machine. Their flawed logic is that pray some prayers or donate some money in church and receive one’s miracle. The reality is that miracles happen when its the will of God for them to happen.
Why should the nations say,“Where is their God?” Our God is in the heavens; he does all that he pleases. (Psalm 115:2-3)
So when you receive what you’ve prayed to the Lord, don’t go lax on your prayers. Why not pray for other’s who still have yet to get their breakthrough in life? Suppose a man gets a good woman to marry, then he could rejoice no doubt but he can also pray in secret for his friends who are yet to find a suitable spouse for themselves.
There are lots of people who need your intercession. Floods, earthquakes, famines etc still take place. You can pray for the safety of the people in such places. If possible you can also help in whatever other positive way that you can. So don’t stop praying but pray even more. The Lord’s willing to hear humble and faithful believers in Christ all the time.
God be with you!