If you’d like to listen to this sermon, which I would suggest, you’ll find it: https://open.spotify.com/episode/3ntumao953jtKdPtyd7MSn?si=yf6sULUmSCyNUsitwCEoJQ
Thoughts and prayers, are they worthless? Is it just a cliche that we throw out there when someone tells us about a tragedy? Let’s take a look at what this means.
Thoughts are our take on the situation that produces an idea or opinion about it. If the reaction is that it’s awful that happened, but there is no plan to comfort the individual, the thought doesn’t offer much in the way of support.
Authentic prayer takes our thoughts and opinions and submits them to God’s will. Even Jesus followed God’s will. When he was preparing for his triumphal entry into Jerusalem, he told them to go get the donkey’s colt and if anyone asks, tell them the Lord needs them. Jesus is bringing his thoughts, a plan, to the will of God. It was fulfillment of the prophecy describing the entry of the son of God.
Thoughts may be our best attempts at comfort, but they don’t really hold any power.
We may take our thoughts to God in prayer, but are your prayers about what you want? Isn’t that how our prayers often are? But prayer isn’t just a want list. We should ask what God he would have us do. When our prayers ask for his will to be done, we’ll see Godly change and action. If you want your thoughts and prayers to matter? Submit them to God. His will is sovereign.
Some of God’s will is hidden and some is revealed. It’s revealed through his Word, that’s why it’s important to spend time studying the Bible.
“Cease striving and know that. I Am God”Psalm 46:10
Nothing happens outside of God’s perfect will. The hard thing is that we overlook what he’s revealed to us because we’re looking so hard for what’s hidden.
And this takes us to the tears and palms portion of this sermon. I wondered how our pastor was going to bring this all together.
The followers of Jesus were praising him for the miracles he had performed. They called him the “king who comes in the name of the Lord!” The Pharisees told him to rebuke his disciples, but
40“I tell you ,” he replied,”if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.”Luke 19:40
41As he (Jesus) approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it 42and said, “If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace—but now it is hidden from you eyes. 43The days will come upon you when your enemies will build an embankment against you and encircle you and hem you in on every side. 44 They will dash you to the ground, you and the children within your walls. They will not leave one stone on another, because you did not recognize the time of God’s coming to you.”Luke 19:41-44
Who is Jesus weeping for? He was crying for those who were so stubborn they were blinded to the truth that was right in front of them. They were waiting for the return of their triumphant King, but they were so focused on what they thought he would be, that when he was right in front of them they refused to listen to him.
How do we make sure that we don’t make the same mistake? First of all we need to look at what he says is the most important commandment.
We make it much more difficult than it needs to be, don’t we? The things in the Bible reveal the will of God. Looking for the hidden, we brush aside what’s been revealed to us.
Jesus rides into Jerusalem on a donkey, just as the prophet said he would, There were shouts of praise to the one many believed to be the Christ. Hosannahs were cheered during his triumphal entry. This is where the palms come in as they waved palm leaves and put them on the ground as a sort of carpet for him to enter on.
He was weeping for those who still didn’t get it. For those that would be destroyed because they refused to accept the gift he offered, everlasting life. The king they were expecting was a ruler who would defeat their enemies with the sword. But the King came to save, not destroy.
I picture Jesus praying in the garden, desperately pleading with God for there to be another way for us to be redeemed. He wept tears of blood as he prayed. Ultimately he follows God’s will. He willingly went with the officials when they came to get him. He didn’t argue or plead with them. He knew the price for our salvation was high, but he gave his life willingly for ours.
It’s taken me longer to write this post than usual. I’m not sure why, but as I sit here finishing it up, it’s Good Friday. I always used to wonder what was so good about it. But, I get it now. The crucifixion of Jesus had to happen to pay the price for our sins.
Why would God do that? Because he loves us more than we can comprehend. Jesus is our Savior.
It’s not over yet. There’s still time for you if you’ve not accepted him into your heart yet.
- Seek to know God’s revealed will. You’ll find it written in the Bible.
- Be diligent in obeying it.
- Trust that God is working all things together for the good of those who love him.
- What is hidden now will be revealed in glory.
- Thoughts of Christ
- Prayers reveal God’s will
I hope that you’ve found something in this post that struck a chord in your heart. That it will bring you closer to the One who came to save you.