How Much Does Prayer Weigh?

 

Louise Redden, a poorly dressed lady with a look of defeat on her face, walked into a grocery store. She approached the owner of the store in a most humble manner and asked if he would let her charge a few groceries. She softly explained that her husband was very ill and unable to work, they had seven children and they needed food. John Longhouse, the grocer, scoffed at her and requested that she leave his store.

Visualizing the family needs, she said: 'Please, sir! I will bring you the money just as soon as I can."

John told her he could not give her credit, as she did not have a charge account at his store.

Standing beside the counter was a customer who overheard the conversation between the two. The customer walked forward and told the grocer-man that he would stand good for whatever she needed for her family.

The grocer-man said in a very reluctant voice, "Do you have a grocery list?

Louise replied "Yes sir"

"O.K." he said, put your grocery list on the scales and whatever your grocery list weighs, I will give you that amount in groceries."

Louise, hesitated a moment with a bowed head, then she reached into her purse and took out a piece of paper and scribbled something on it. She then laid the piece of paper on the scale carefully with her head still bowed. The eyes of the grocer-man and the customer showed amazement when the scales went down and stayed down.

The grocer-man staring at the scales, turned slowly to the customer and said begrudgingly, "I can't believe it." The customer smiled and the grocer-man started putting the groceries on the other side of the scales. The scale did not balance so he continued to put more and more groceries on them until the scales would hold no more. The grocer-man stood there in utter disgust.

Finally, he grabbed the piece of paper from the scales and looked at it with greater amazement. It was not a grocery list; it was a prayer which said; "Dear Lord, you know my needs and I am leaving this in your hands."

The grocer-man gave her the groceries that he had gathered and placed on the scales and stood in stunned silence. Louise thanked him and left the store. The customer handed a fifty-dollar bill to John as he said, "It was worth every penny of it."

It was sometime later that John Longhouse discovered the scales were broken; therefore, only God knows how much a prayer weighs.

Submitted by Karen Beckwith

The Helmet of Salvation

 

And taking the helmet of salvation:  Ephesians 6:17

In 1 Thessalonians 5:8 Paul, the writer of Ephesians sheds more light on the helmet of salvation.

1 Thessalonians 5:8:  But let us who are of the day be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet the hope of salvation. NKJV

The next piece of armour is a helmet.  Something to cover the head!  The importance of the head does not need much convincing.  A soldier can survive a broken arm, but a broken head, depending on the severity of the wound, can be life threatening.

By calling salvation a helmet, we have a clear understanding of what salvation refers to here.

What is the helmet - The hope of salvation?

The hope of salvation is for the head.  It covers our minds, intellect or reasoning.  Hope has a very different meaning from what we use the word for in the normal sense of the word.

When we say 'I hope it does not rain' the very sentence itself contains doubt and an expectation we cannot do anything about.  Hope from the Bible's point of view is much more powerful.  Hope is one of the three essentials.  Listen to the following scripture.

And now these three remain: faith, hope and love; but the greatest of these is love. 1 Corinthians 13:13 NIV

Faith, hope and love are all essential.  Faith is of the heart, God gives it to us.  We may not entirely understand all that God does, but we can still put our faith in Him.

Hope on the other hand is of the mind.  It covers the head.  It is our helmet.  A man can survive several days without food or water, but take away hope and he may well commit suicide immediately.

" a faith and knowledge resting on the hope of eternal life, which God, who does not lie, promised before the beginning of time, " Titus 1:2-3 NIV

" if you continue in your faith, established and firm, not moved from the hope held out in the gospel. This is the gospel that you heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven, and of which I, Paul, have become a servant. Col 1:22-23 NIV

The above two scriptures help shed light on God's definition of hope.  Our hope is based on the eternal life of God.  Our hope is held out to us in the gospel.

An understanding of what God has promised us brings us hope.  God does not lie.  Our hope is based on Him.  A Christian with the helmet of the hope of salvation will not get confused with the fleeting pleasures of sin.  Nor will they trade their birth right (salvation) for the temporary lusts of the world.

Take time to meditate on the following scriptures

Ps 25:3-5  3 No one whose hope is in you will ever be put to shame, but they will be put to shame who are treacherous without excuse.  4 Show me your ways, O LORD, teach me your paths; 5 guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.  NIV

Ps 33:20-22  20 We wait in hope for the LORD; He is our help and our shield.  21 In Him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in His holy name.  22 May your unfailing love rest upon us, O LORD, even as we put our hope in You. NIV

Ps 119:81  My soul faints with longing for Your salvation, but I have put my hope in Your word. NIV

Isa 40:31  31 But those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength.  They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. NIV

How to put on the helmet?

Hope is the confidence we have in the Lord Jesus Christ.  We develop it the same way we develop faith.  God's word touches our hearts and heads.  It is essential you have a clear understanding of what God has promised you.  This will give you hope; an unfailing expectation in the ability of your God to fulfil His promise.

Hope is something you think about and understand.  Faith is something you believe and confess even if you cannot understand it.

Hebrews 6:19We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure.  It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain, NIV

Hope provides us with an anchor.  It is something to hold unto with our soul, intellect, emotions and faith.  Faith needs hope to sustain it.

Mediate on the following scriptures for a dose of hope:

Ps 25:3-5  3 No one whose hope is in you will ever be put to shame, but they will be put to shame who are treacherous without excuse. 4 Show me your ways, O LORD, teach me your paths; 5 guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Saviour, and my hope is in you all day long. NIV

Isa 40:31  31 but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength.  They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. NIV

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