Serving Franklin County, WA

'I'm praying for you'

“Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift all of you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, Simon that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.” Luke 22:31-32

This is the beginning of a story that most of us have heard about, especially the ending when the rooster crowed and Peter denied Jesus three times.

I would like to take some time to encourage you and say, Jesus is praying for you as you read this article.

He might not be praying what we want him to be praying. We may want him to pray that the temptation or trial will never come. We may be thinking He can stop this if He wants.

But that is not how Jesus prayed for Peter and the rest of the disciples; the trials are coming because we live in a world where there is good and bad.

So, I guess the question is not why did Jesus not stop the attack but why did Peter fail in the midst of this temptation to deny Jesus?

As we read this, remember that Jesus is praying for Peter, but it’s not how you might think he would be praying.

How many times do you remember Jesus telling the disciples it was because of their “lack of faith” or “little faith” that they were in the difficulty yet he would tell others “your faith has healed you.” Jesus was praying for their faith not to fail.

Could it be that Jesus is more concerned with us having a strong faith than us having an easy life? I think so, but we still spend a lot of time praying that God would remove the struggle in front of us.

I heard it said that when you steal a child’s struggle, you steal the learning or lesson. When you support the child in the struggle, you take the child even farther than he could go on his own.

The challenges and struggles will come in this life on earth and Jesus gave us hope for those times. One: he is praying for us so know that we are not alone; and two: later in this chapter Jesus himself told us, “Pray that you may not enter into temptation.”

If our prayers sounded more like Jesus’ prayers for us, we would not give into temptation and our faith would be strong.

I pray that your faith would be strong in the middle of whatever you are going through today. When you come out the other side of the struggle, you can strengthen your fellow believers through your testimony.

Have a great day in the Lord.

— Bill Cox is the pastor of Ritzville Foursquare Church. Email him at [email protected]

 

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