By Charles Edward Jefferson
Is faith in Jesus opposed to reason? Certainly not! Pastor Charles Edward Jefferson shows why Jesus is the most reasonable man you could meet.
The world is racing toward destruction! God first saw the world reach this dreadful place when He came to Noah and told him He was going to destroy the world with a great flood and begin anew, all the while realizing that the world would reach that point again.
Only His Son, Jesus, could save humanity and the world God created. Jesus came to redeem us from sin by His loving sacrifice on the cross. He gave us a true picture of God and the life He wanted us to live. His birth brought new hope to His people and revival fueled by love — an example of how to love and what love could do in this world.
We say that when a person loses consciousness, he or she needs to be revived. Many in the world have lost their consciousness of God and who He is. A nation and its people can lose their love for the truth and one another. We need revival, and I believe it must start on a personal level — one heart at a time.
Let me tell you my own story of revival.
And I said to the man who stood at the gate of the year,
“Give me a light that I may tread safely into the unknown.”
And he replied: “Go out into the darkness and put your hand into the Hand of God.
That shall be to you better than light and safer than a known way.”
Minnie Haskins, 1875-1957
I first read those words some thirty years ago on a church bulletin. I hurried home, cut off the front of the bulletin, and immediately put it on my refrigerator with magnets. I didn’t want to lose those words. For many years, I would pull out the old bulletin each January and put it back up.
I had no idea where the words came from. The bulletin said the author was “anonymous.” But I did know that something about them spoke to my heart. Much later, I discovered that the author was Minnie Haskins, a grocer’s daughter from Bristol, England. It’s said that the words came to her while standing on an upstairs balcony one night, looking down a lighted path to the gate at the end of the drive.
Her poem was made famous by King George VI in his Christmas Day broadcast in 1939, as the Second World War was beginning. The world around him was in crisis and longing for hope. The poem had been brought to King George’s attention by his wife, Queen Elizabeth (mother of the current Queen Elizabeth), and it was recited at her funeral some 63 years later.
These words have impacted so many people. Every time I mention them to someone familiar with them, their face lights up. Or, if they haven’t heard them yet, they immediately say, “Please send me that poem!”
Why do those lines affect us so?
In the interest of transparency I will begin with a few disclosures. First, I am the brother of Mary Ann who oversees this ministry. Second, I belong to a church community that has supported this ministry financially for many years. Third, my wife and I have also been financial supporters through the years. Fourth, although people have praised me for quite a few things throughout life, sometimes deservedly and often not so much, no one has ever accused me of being a great prayer warrior. Fifth, to my shame, I have always thought of praying on the phone for people who don’t know you, and who you don’t know, as a bit strange. This in spite of the fact that several brothers and sisters who I know and love take this ministry extremely seriously and lose sleep to make it happen. Sixth, it never occurred to me until recently that the FaithPrayers ministry is an expression of something that is very important to me when I reflect on what followers of Jesus are called to be and do.
You are probably thinking—“Well, duh! Of course, we are called to prayer.” But, although I am working regularly toward a deeper and better prayer life, that is not what I am talking about. I am talking about the fact that praying for others can very well be an extremely important act of both Justice and Mercy. This insight came to me recently as a personal revelation.
Jesus said that, and in their own ways many great thinkers have also said it. But to me, the fact that Jesus said it so clearly makes it carry special meaning.
I wonder if we could also say:
“Pray about others as you would have others pray about you.”
What would that mean?
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