Athlete, There is Power in Showing Up
1 John 5:14,15 (NIV)
This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us -- whatever we ask -- we know that we have what we asked of Him.
There’s a moment in the first chapter of the book of Acts that, upon first read, feels like a hole in the story.
It happens after Jesus ascends into heaven, and angels tell the disciples, “‘Men of Galilee,’ they said, ‘why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen Him go into heaven’” (Acts 1:11 NIV).
After that, the now-apostles go into a room and pray with a bunch of people. And then eventually, Peter stands up and declares that Scripture is alive and at work, being fulfilled in their very midst, and the first church begins. Right then and there.
Let’s back up. Jesus ascends, the disciples stare into the sky, some angels tell them Jesus will come back, they go into a room and pray, and church begins.
I’ve always been curious: What did they pray about? As a narrative, it feels a little unfulfilling at first.
I want to know what they were feeling, especially after seeing their just-resurrected Savior ascend into heaven. What was their reaction? What did they discuss?
What did they cry out to God? What happened?
We might not have been in the room where it happened, but we can still glean a couple things about what went down: The apostles were together, and they sought the Lord; nothing fancy or strategic or crazy.
I’ve reread this section so many times, and as hungry as I remain to know what exchanges were shared in that room, I am struck by the scene: “They all joined together constantly in prayer, along with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brothers” (Acts 1:14). And next thing you know — the “capital C” — church begins.
So many times I underestimate the power in gathering with believers and seeking out the Lord in prayer together. I always feel like I need to have an agenda or a plan first — which, of course, isn’t a bad thing necessarily, as God can put goals and desires and dreams and plans on our hearts to seek out and pray for.
But, “Man!” I never just ask people to join in a room together to pray.
But what would happen? What would happen if we gathered together in prayer? After all, God is Someone who abounds with love, kindness, mercy, grace and power.
He is so good, and still chooses to be near us. As 1 John 5:14 says, “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.”
What do we need to cry out to God for? Don’t underestimate God — His ways aren’t our ways; who knows what revelations and visions He might reveal to us.
Let’s make time today to join together in fellowship and prayer. Let’s make that a goal — to gather and pray, and see what God does.