Jason and I had a wonderful day Sunday visiting a local church and presenting our burden for Wales. All the services were a blessing, but I gleaned several spiritual insights from the Sunday morning message by Pastor Roger Morgan. Over the next few days, I’d like to share with you some things the Spirit spoke to me and also a couple of ideas I’m planning to “borrow” from Pastor Morgan.
Later in the week, Lord willing, I’ll deal with the Lord’s dialogue in the passage, but for today, I want to focus on the disciples. Jesus had just told them something that makes absolutely no sense to them. In their minds, he may as well have been speaking another language. They didn’t get it.
It’s okay to not understand something. Jason and I are looking for a new life insurance policy, and let me tell you, trying to read through and understand the various forms is enough to give anyone a headache. Sadly, by the time I get to the end of a particularly lengthy paragraph, I still have no idea what it means. I don’t understand the legal language and become easily confused. And you know what? That’s okay.
What’s not okay is to remain confused when the one who knows the answer is right there beside you. Notice how the disciples responded to their confusion—they talked among themselves. What good did that do? James asked John, but John didn’t know the answer, so he asked Andrew, who didn’t know the answer, so Andrew asked Peter and on and on. Why didn’t they just ask Jesus? After all, He was the one who said it, so He obviously knew what He meant. Why, instead, did they waste time and effort and work themselves into a tizzy trying to find the answer among themselves?
It’s a fair question, but before we point an accusing finger at the disciples, we might want to look at our own lives. When problems arise and we feel afraid and confused, do we immediately turn to the Lord for answers? I’d have to say most of us eventually turn to Him, but first we “share” our situation with a friend or two. . . and all of social media. We turn to fellow man for answers or advice, and that’s all well and good, but the only One who knows all about it is Jesus. Why don’t we seek His counsel? When faced with a situation we don’t understand, why don’t we immediately run to the throne of God or to His holy Word?
In the passage in John 16, Jesus stood quietly by as the disciples whispered among themselves, but finally, he called them on it. “Why are asking each other what I meant? Why aren’t you asking me?” Jesus knew they didn’t understand. He knew they wanted to ask but were afraid to. He also saw proof that when trouble and confusion arise, we lose sight of God. He was standing right there in their presence, but they were talking about Him like He wasn’t even there. How quickly had they lost sight of Him! And how quickly do we do the same!
My friends, there will be situations in life that are confusing, frustrating, and exhausting. And while it’s perfectly acceptable to share a burden with friends and family, let’s make sure the first thing we do is run to God with the need. Pour out the burden. Ask for direction. Seek for the Spirit to make clear the path before us. And whatever we do, don’t lose sight of the One who sees all, hears all, and knows all.
Whispered prayers are supposed to be directed to God, not to fellow man.