God takes initiative

Before they call I will answer;
    while they are still speaking I will hear.
- Isaiah 65:24
This is how God works: he takes the initiative to bless.
God doesn’t wait until we ask for help to start helping us. We often find that God’s work to answer our prayers started before we even started praying. The ball was rolling, help was on the way, and everything was in motion. This doesn’t negate our need for prayer; it just contextualizes it. Our life of prayer exists within God’s good work to love and bless us.
Now, we get swept up into this in radical ways. As God’s people, he sometime sends us as the answer to other people’s prayers. That Bible passage you discussed in small group last week might prepare you to answer a question someone at work will ask next week. That message you heard back in February may give you the wisdom you need to counsel someone through a difficult situation in July. And that service project you signed up for just now (www.chathamserves.org) may impact the life of someone who hasn’t even yet asked God for help.
God is doing amazing things in the world, unlooked for amazing things. We feel so grateful that God has taken the initiative to bless, heal, and bring about reconciliation. In Isaiah 65:25, we see the fruit of God’s initiative:
The wolf and the lamb will feed together,
    and the lion will eat straw like the ox,
    and dust will be the serpent’s food.
They will neither harm nor destroy
    on all my holy mountain,”
says the Lord.
Enemies will be reconciled. Enemies will be transformed. Justice will be done. Peace will reign under the banner of Christ.
Even people who aren’t looking for this will be blessed by this. Republicans and Democrats will experience friendship. Duke and Carolina and State fans will enjoy life together. Broken families will be healed. We will all learn to love each other and to love God.
Take a few minutes today to thank God for taking initiative to bless us, heal us, and bring reconciliation our way.

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