Many times, believers try to explain away miracles, we want to stick to our senses and logic and we want to explain how miracles were possible in the Bible days but impossible in our days. Is it not scam if the Bible days were full of miracles and not anymore today? Won’t it look worrisome if we practice a faith that can’t be proven by any means?
I was reading some materials previously and the author was trying to explain why we shouldn’t expect miracles anymore, he tried proving that miracles happened in the Bible days because God wanted to spread Christianity with it and he explained why it doesn’t happen anymore. If that is true, then Christianity will be the biggest scam that has ever surfaced on earth.
However, we know that miracles happen even now, we know that we receive answers when we pray, we know that God’s word was true yesterday, it remains true today and will remain true tomorrow. Some of us are first-hand witnesses of the miraculous.
The first time I worked a remarkable miracle by the power of God was in 2013 when I was leading a ministry in an Anglican Church. I remember I wasn’t ready, I remember I wasn’t expecting anything extraordinary; I wasn’t on fasting or intense prayer. We had just finished our annual end of the year event and the team had sat back for appraisals when a member of the team who was the treasurer rose and said
“I became a true believer in God after witnessing the tremendous things God did in this meeting. The finances came miraculously and I can tell you that for the first time, we have run a program without running into debt and we have even much more money remaining! I remember complaining to the President that we have no funds but he said that God will provide and truly, money was falling into my hands from every angle! That can only be God!”
That isn’t my testimony but it was enough, the large team was happy as they clapped to the glory of God but Frank continued,
“I saw God in all of this and even with less publicity, we were able to run a successful program!” He turned to me “Sir, there is a young guy at the back of the auditorium, he has been having a serious stomach ache that he can’t sit down anymore or stand… He is lying there on the floor.”
I looked back and truly, a young boy was groaning there in pains. Frank continued “Sir if this God is true… For the benefit of others, can you go over and pray for him? If God was able to do this in our event, then his healing will be nothing!”
Was that a challenge? I hadn’t done that before and I felt it was going to mean “putting the Lord my God to test.” If I had my way, I would have explained it away, I would have asked them to take the boy home and he will be fine gradually. I was scared, I didn’t want to put myself to shame or get people to doubt God by my lack of faith.
On second thought, it seemed I heard a voice say “it is not to your shame but God’s shame if that boy isn’t healed instantly when you pray. It is not your duty to think about the shame… Leave it to God. You have to volunteer as a channel and God has to use you.”
I was still hesitating in my heart and the voice continued
“Whose power is it you are to use?”
“God’s power,” I said in my heart
“If that boy doesn’t stand, leave it to God… You did your part and let him do his.”
I didn’t know so much then, I have been preaching since I was a kid but by gifting, I know that I am a teacher, I need to one to clarify me on that but other dimensions of the Spirit hadn’t found expressions in me then. I made the move however, I had just a little faith, as little as a mustard seed as Jesus said, “that is enough to do the impossible.”
I stood from my seat and they made a way for me to walk directly to the young boy. Getting to where he was lying and groaning, I didn’t know what to do, I didn’t know how to begin, I didn’t know where to lay hands, I didn’t know the kind of prayer to pray, I didn’t know if I should beg God to do something, beg the illness to go or command the devil out.
When I saw I had no option listed for me, I decided to touch him anywhere I can. I laid my right palm on him, closed my eyes and muttered: “Have your way, Lord.” That was the only thing I remember I said, the rest of the few seconds, I muttered in tongues and immediately, the young boy started vibrating. I felt the surge of God’s power and that moment my faith grew in a flash! I became so sure that anything I said at that moment was going to happen, inside of me, I felt like I could blind an eye or open it if I so wish and I was so careful with my words.
As he was vibrating, the audience watched in awe. I said in a loud voice “be healed in the name of Jesus” and he jumped up but was staggering violently as though he was struggling with someone. Some of my team members wanted to hold him and keep him still but I felt in my heart “what is the need using their strength if I can just use a word?” I stopped them saying “leave him; he won’t hit his body on the pillars.”
We watched as he staggered around violently and once he gets to a pillar, it seemed something gets him out of the pillars and yet he wouldn’t fall on the floor. When I felt satisfied, I said again with a loud voice “peace! Be still!” He fell on the floor, flattened out as though cold water was poured on him and in a few seconds he got himself and stood up!
The auditorium was filled with joy, people raised me and carried me about singing eulogies but I cautioned them immediately asking them to pull me down “it is not me, this is the power of God, and I was just a channel!”
After this experience and many more like it, nobody can explain away the power of God to me anymore, I may not have worked miracles often, I may have been hindered by fear to some extent but I know for sure that the power of God is real and I have worked it with my own hands, I have felt what it is like to have the power of God flow through you to the next person. Whenever I read Jesus saying “power just left me”, I remember my experience. That first miracle is the most remarkable miracle I have experienced.
I have to tell this story so that you get to understand that we aren’t just dealing with theories. The power of God is real and if we can trust him in the place of prayer, we can access divine help! If I had tried explaining why they shouldn’t expect miracles that night, I would have explained away what God wanted to do in our midst. Every single person in that meeting is still alive to date and they can attest to this.
When we are faced with a challenge, the first thing to do isn’t to worry but to pray. Prayer is the believers only alternative to worry. The Bible says in Philippians 4:6-7
“Don’t worry about anything, instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.”
Look at that again! We don’t worry about anything, there is nothing about any situation that should get us to dwell in worry but rather every situation should get us to pray! Instead of worry, pray! Since worry won’t solve our problems why engage in it? To pray means to engage and talk to God. God is our father and therefore it is not out of place if we run to him for every single thing! It is in prayer and thanksgiving that we experience the peace of God.
When we find ourselves amid the storm, all we have to do is to trust God and talk to him about it. When we talk to him about it, we live it up to him and stay in his peace. It takes trust in God to enjoy peace even amid problems. This peace exceeds the understanding and logics of men because they can’t comprehend how someone can be in the fire and rather be dancing!
Just imagine the three friends of Daniel that was thrown into the fire, they trusted God and because of that, they enjoyed the peace and were dancing in the fire. Sometimes, when we focus on our many problems, it begins to shape our experience but when we focus on the greatness of God, it also begins to shape our experience which results in peace. Those who don’t trust in the Lord will always live in anxiety. Jesus said in Matthew 6:25, 27, 32 NLT
“That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing? Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs…”
Worry adds no single moment to your life, why not take a chill pill and make every moment of your life count by trusting in Jesus? However, in prayers you enjoy peace not necessarily because you got money by praying or got out of that situation but because you have submitted your anxieties to God knowing that he knows best what to do with it. It may not be possible to live a life 100% free of worry but each time worry surfaces; you’ve got to remind yourself that God has got your back!
Peter captures this in 1 Peter 5:7 NIV
“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.”
Peter didn’t rule out the possibility of worries, he didn’t say we can’t get worried but we can deal with that worry upfront by casting it over to God! God hears us when we pray; the Psalmist puts it this way in Psalms 34:17 NLT
“The LORD hears his people when they call to him for help. He rescues them from all their troubles.”
God doesn’t just hear us when we call on him for help; he rescues us from all troubles. The word “all” here means every problem including the ones we got ourselves into. Sometimes, we expect that an angel comes from heaven and rescues us from a challenge, sometimes we expect a mysterious thing to happen when we pray but there are times all we need is just ideas, there are times we pray and God helps us by giving us an idea, that idea becomes the game changer! The Bible says in Jeremiah 33:3 NLT
“Ask me and I will tell you remarkable secrets you do not know about things to come.”
When we pray, we are asking God to come into the situation, we are permitting God to take his place in our affairs! We receive direction and revelations in the place of prayers. The Bible says in James 5:16 NLT
“…The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results.”
You may be wondering, I am not righteous, I just misbehaved the last minute but truth is that you are the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus. Righteousness in Christ isn’t based on your efforts but on what Christ has done. Because you are righteous, your prayer makes power tremendously available. However, this isn’t the kind of prayer you pray while feeling sleepy or the one you pray when you are already late to work. Heartfelt or earnest prayer is a consistent prayer; a prayer that you’ve put your Spirit into, not a carnal prayer or prayers based on your fears.
When there is something you truly want to see a change in, stay consistent in the place of prayer, pray until you begin to see the results. Sometimes, we do not just pray until something happens; we also pray knowing that there must be results! Do not let sin consciousness limit you from getting the best that God has given to you, do not limit your answers because of what you are thinking. You are the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus (1 Corinthians 5:21) and therefore power is made tremendously available when you pray. Go ahead and pray!
We have been able to establish the following:
- The believer’s only alternative to worrying is prayer.
- We pray because we have a heavenly father.
- We pray because we trust God.
- We pray because God hears
- Prayer births an experience of peace from God.
- Prayer exposes us to God’s direction and revelations.
- When we pray, power is made available.
HINDRANCES TO PRAYERS
It is possible to pray and not get answers, it is possible to pray and not see results but this is not because God hasn’t done something but because we may be getting certain things wrong and blocking answers from coming.
- Doubt, Lack of Faith: Sometimes, our prayers are hindered because of doubt, lack of faith. The Bible says in James 1:6 NLT
“But when you ask him, be sure that your faith is in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind.”
When we doubt God, we are questioning the power of God and passing vote of no confidence on him. This way, we are limiting God from doing something but when we trust in Him, we can see what he has done already and begin to receive it. You can have faith and fear at the same time and to dwell in fear means to trust your challenges more than you trust God.
- Disrespect to God’s will – when we are asking God for things based on our mere carnal desires, selfishness and lack of contentment, we are disrespecting God’s will. The Bible says in 1 John 5:14 NLT
“And we are confident that he hears us whenever we ask for anything that pleases him.”
Our confidence should be in asking what pleases him. If we are truly loyal to God, we will only desire his will and nothing more. Sometimes, in telling God what we want, we just follow the example of the human-Jesus in saying “let your will be done.” He hears us whenever we ask for what pleases him, but some people are asking for what doesn’t please God and that is why they aren’t getting any result.
- Unforgiveness – Unforgiveness is a hindrance to prayer, God desires that we follow his examples and treat others in the same way he treats us. Because of how important and mysterious the act of forgiveness is, we will be dedicating a whole new chapter to it. This new chapter will reflect in the upcoming book.