Yesterday morning, a friend of mine asked for spiritual counsel with something that she was needing to address that day. A short time later, another friend asked for prayer for a specific battle going on in her household. Both, in my opinion, required prayer. Prayer, AND, action.
For the Lord giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding.
To be asked to pray for another person’s heart, needs, health, struggle… is a sacred thing. Even more so is the invitation to share your personal perspective or wisdom. Neither, do I take lightly, because both are an invitation to the table.
I think a lot of people mean well – we have experienced something or seen something else work well and we want to share it with those who are walking in a similar vein. The struggle, sometimes, however with Christians is that we haven’t always been invited to share yet. We have seen the power of God in our lives, and/or in the lives of others, and want to share that good news with all who will listen, and yet we can sometimes forget to create trust and relationship first. Subsequently, we can share what we think another person needs, but because we haven’t been really listening (or have been pre-assessing), our words of counsel come off as judgment.
Because they are.
My son, attend unto my wisdom, and bow thine ear to my understanding:
One of the reasons that Jesus’ ministry was so powerful was who he WAS. Yes, it was what he said and the anointing on his life, but those are direct results of him being in constant prayer. Jesus asked the Lord when to speak and when not to, when to heal and when to walk away. Everything he did was the result of listening and being sensitive to the Spirit.
That is our mandate as well.
If we genuinely love people and authentically want to be the hands and feet of God, we need to be willing to submit to the process and do things His way and in His timing – not ours. The way we lives our lives, how we respond to life’s challenges or to the people around us, are vital to our journey with one another.
And to receiving an invitation.