Spoken by people the world over when faced with a situation that is overwhelming in which they are powerless. 

The plea to a doctor by a mother whose child is dying. The plea of a father to the fire fighter as he stands outside a home that is about to explode. The plea of a child to passers by to rescue her father drowning in the river.

Doing something is what we humans say all the time which has enabled us to advance and prosper but there are some things we cannot do even when life is at stake.

This is where prayer comes in. We pray because it’s a sign of humility, in that we need help from a greater source. We pray because we are inclined to panic therefore it gives us time to wait and reflect. We pray because God answers prayer.

In one of the Psalms of David, he writes “this poor man cried and the Lord heard him and delivered him from all of his troubles”.

The greatest of us is powerless at times and under certain circumstances completely useless. What can we do when the hurricane arrives and refuse to leave. What can we do when the earth shakes for less than a minute yet almost everything is raised to the ground and what can we do when it rains and keeps on raining or when it doesn’t rain at all for an extended period.

New Testament salvation is based on us doing something as opposed to not doing something. “They that call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved”.

“Repent and be baptized everyone of you in the name if Jesus Christ for the remission of your sins and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit”.

“For as many as received him to them gave he the power to become the children of God, even to them that believe on his name”.

In the story of the rich man and Lazarus it describes the death of two men, a rich man and a beggar by the name of Lazarus. The rich man from hell pleads with Abraham to do something so that his five brothers would be spared the experience of hell.

The story ends with Abraham telling the rich man that even if one came back from the dead with a message they still wouldn’t believe him and repent. Jesus came back from the dead and many still won’t believe and repent. I know many who believe but will not repent. (Luke 16:19-31).

Thankfully, not everybody is unwilling to believe and act upon what they are asked to do.

The birth of the church as described in Acts 2, shows the importance of collective gathering and preaching.

The 120 or so that were gathered in the upper room in Jerusalem were rewarded with the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. Thousands came from across the city in response to the noise they heard and the report from others. At first the crowd mocked and made fun of the church but soon were asking what must we do? Peter then told them what to do. Three thousand people did what they were told and became the first fruits of the church.

Politicians, fathers and mothers, husbands and wives are in response to the Coronavirus saying: “do something”! Following the report that their country, children and spouse have contracted the virus.

Thankfully, death is not inevitable yet many are dead and more death is expected.

Because of the novelty of the virus, there is great fear which in turn is leading to panic, reduction in travel, cancellation of holidays and poor economic growth.

In the light of this let us pray. Prayer is our request to God to do something. To whom we pray is therefore important.

In the days of Elijah the prophet hundreds of Baal prophets prayed for fire to come down from heaven as vindication as to which was the true God, they prayed from morning till evening and nothing happened. Exhausted and embarrassed the Baal prophets gave way to Elijah, who prayed a simple prayer and fire came down in full view of everybody.

If my house was on fire I wouldn’t call for a doctor and if I needed medical help I wouldn’t call for a fire fighter.

The God of the bible said to King Solomon: “If I shut up heaven that there be no rain, or if I command the locusts to devour the land, or if I send pestilence among my people; [14] If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land”. (2 Chronicles 7:13-14).

Our platform is the world and congregation the people.

The Lord’s servant

Lloyd Denny