Many churches throughout the world use a Bible reading schedule called a "lectionary." It's just a fancy word meaning "selected readings." Posts like this reflect on the readings for an upcoming Sunday or other Church holiday, as found in the three-year lectionary.
Our passage from James speaks volumes about the nature of fellowship in Christ. The Church is to be a place of togetherness where we all look to the Lord as the one who is able to nurture and sustain us. When we are struggling we turn to one another but not merely for human company. We look for divine intervention as we bring our prayers to the Lord. Why would we doubt? After all, the Lord is still supernatural. Prayer stil communicates with God. And God in Christ is still the eternal savior.
Yet we prefer to tell people we will pray, rather than going ahead and praying. Why do we doubt? Why do we defer God’s resources until later? As I write this, it strikes me that I am not reliably going to remember to pray for a need later. I’d better do it right away, as I did for a complete stranger at a bus stop earlier today. She asked for prayer, so I asked her if we cold pray then. Yes, God can hear us when we pray t the bus stop.
What is the hope here? After all, many of us doubt we would be able to do any great spiritual works. What do we see in James 5:19-20? If we have the opportunity to draw someone from error into truth, we save the person’s soul from death and cover countless sins. If may not be flashy, but it sure is good! Let’s go pray for each other.
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