Do you remember this children’s song?
My God is SO BIG,
So strong and so mighty,
there’s nothing my GOD cannot do!
The mountains are his,
The oceans are his…
OK, I’ll stop. But you were singing and doing the hand motions weren’t you? (which looked pretty funny if you are reading this in a cubicle at work somewhere)
I was reminded of this in our corporate prayer time at Calvary Community Church this morning. And, let me say something briefly about that. If you aren’t currently engaged in corporately praying with others in the church, you are robbing yourself of blessing. I know – it is tough to get out of bed really early, drive all the way somewhere, and then continue on with your day. I know – it can be scary to pray in front of others, you worry what they think, will you pray “well enough” (whatever that means), will you have anything to say.
Don’t create those false expectations. Praying is just talking to God. You…talking…to…God. It is not a performance. You don’t have to learn how to talk like someone else. The whole point is to be authentic, and lift up requests with others that he might answer them.
The thing about corporate prayer is that you will be blessed to pray something along with another brother and sister in Christ that you might not have otherwise, in a way that you might not have otherwise.
Which gets me back where I started. I came into corporate prayer heavy this morning. Nothing in particular, just feeling spiritually cold and heavy. And a dear sister in Christ prayed something like this,
God, I thank you for your Word. I thank you for the book of Isaiah that I’ve been reading, that even though I don’t understand everything there, I understand this. He tells me you are a big God. He says you hold the waters in the hollow of your hand. That you lay out the heavens like a tent. That it is all from your hand. I praise you that you are such a big God.
And with that, the unshared-with-the-group heaviness of my heart started to lift. I too remembered reading in Isaiah of the bigness of God (it is where we are at in the read-through-the-Bible plan at Calvary). That he has “marked off the heavens with a span,” and “enclosed the dust of the earth in a measure, and weighed the mountains in scales and the hills in a balance.” (Is. 40:12)
Because of prayer with others, I was reminded that when so much of our world can seem so big and overwhelming, I need the truth of the Scriptures that he is bigger than it all. God made it all, and is Sovereign over it all. We all need this – don’t we? What comfort from his expansiveness.
I know it has been a long post, but hang in there with me just a little longer. Soak on the text below, where God lets it rip about his power (Is. 41:1-7), but doesn’t leave it there. He says that this power will move on your behalf in love (Is. 41:8-10). Praise be to God!
Is. 41.1 Listen to me in silence,
let the peoples renew their strength;
let them approach, then let them speak;
let us together draw near for judgment.
Is. 41.2 Who stirred up one from the east
whom victory meets at every step?
He gives up nations before him,
so that he tramples kings underfoot;
he makes them like dust with his sword,
like driven stubble with his bow.
3 He pursues them and passes on safely,
by paths his feet have not trod.
4 Who has performed and done this,
calling the generations from the beginning?
I, the LORD, the first,
and with the last; I am he.
Is. 41.5 The coastlands have seen and are afraid;
the ends of the earth tremble;
they have drawn near and come.
6 Everyone helps his neighbor
and says to his brother, “Be strong!”
7 The craftsman strengthens the goldsmith,
and he who smooths with the hammer him who strikes the anvil,
saying of the soldering, “It is good”;
and they strengthen it with nails so that it cannot be moved.
Is. 41.8 But you, Israel, my servant,
Jacob, whom I have chosen,
the offspring of Abraham, my friend;
9 you whom I took from the ends of the earth,
and called from its farthest corners,
saying to you, “You are my servant,
I have chosen you and not cast you off”;
10 fear not, for I am with you;
be not dismayed, for I am your God;
I will strengthen you, I will help you,
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.