Step #1: Lectio / Read
Click the link below or open your Bible to the passage and read through the reading at least once, paying attention to what is happening in the text.
Step #2: Meditatio / Meditate
Use the following meditation to help you reflect more deeply on the Scripture (you may want to read the passage again).
“If you can…”
Man oh man, if those are not some of the most relatable words in all of Scripture then I don’t know what is. I cannot even begin to count the amount of times in my own life I’ve approached the Lord with an “if you can” disposition of the heart.
“Lord, if you can, heal me of my sickness...”
“Lord, if you can, heal my relationship with my parents…”
“Lord, if you can, free me from the lies I’ve always believed about myself…”
I tell myself I have good reasons for approaching the Lord in this way. I don’t want to seem presumptuous, I don’t want to be a burden, surely there are other people in the world who need God’s help more than I do….and the list could continue. But the truth of the matter, the real reason why I cloak my requests with this specific qualifier, is because there exists in me a lingering question: “but what if He doesn't?” What if He doesn’t heal my sickness, what if He doesn’t heal my relationships or free me from the lies? I can imagine the father of the possessed boy felt similarly. The Scriptures tell us that the boy had been afflicted since his youth, his father had only ever known his son to be possessed, he probably felt that that was just the way things were, how they had to be. How guilty of that are we? I’m always sick because that’s just the way I am. My relationship with my parents has always been rocky, that’s just life. These lies I believe have always been a part of me, there’s no way around them. And so the father (and so we too) approaches the Lord, disheartened, dejected, and despairing. “If you can…” because no one else has before, because this is probably just the way things have to be, because what if you don’t.
But then, He does.
Because here’s the thing I’ve been learning about our God you guys, He always heals. In Scripture, anytime anyone approaches the Lord and asks for healing, His answer is always “Yes and Amen.” I didn’t used to believe that. My prayer life used to be filled with “If you cans...” But recently the Lord has been revealing to me that He always desires our healing. It may not always be immediate, and it may look differently than we expect, but whenever we ask for healing, the Healer draws us close, invites us deeper, and only when we’re close enough to hear his gentle whisper does he say, “just watch what I can do.”
My prayer for us today is that we would not be afraid to ask confidently from our Healing Father who always desires to give good gifts to his children!
Step #3: Oratio / Pray
These questions are to be used to talk to God; have a conversation with the Lord about these questions and what is going on in your heart as you pray today.
What are you taking to the Lord and saying if you can?
What is keeping you back from trusting fully in the Lord?
Where have you seen Jesus come and heal you?
Step #4: Contemplatio / Contemplate
In this step, you listen. Stop talking, let God speak to your heart. You may repeat one of these short phrases to focus your mind on the Lord.
"Yes you can."
"Help my unbelief."
"Jesus I trust in you."
Step #5: Actio / Act
In light of today's reading and your time spent in prayer with the Lord, what concrete action or actions will you take to let this encounter with the Lord bear fruit in you today?
In Step 3, where were the places that you have been telling God "if you can". Today turn them fully over to the Lord and ask Him to come and meet you.
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Today's prayer was prepared by Lauren Wright, a Youth Minister in Rockford, IL.
If you have anything you'd like our team to pray for, please go to the page of our website called "Prayers" and let us know how we can pray for you today.