Sunday Session: Preacher, Griever, Intercessor(Summer Con Sunday)
Message (Sunday Service)
Small Group Prayer
A small group prayer time happened from 11:20am to 12:30pm on Sunday, September 6 after our summer conference Sunday service.
Need prayer? Want to learn more about prayer or pray with a small group? Visit the Prayer, Care, and Social Concern ministry page on the main VCBC website for more details.
- Will you identify with His heart?
- Will you learn to groan alongside with the Holy Spirit within you?
- Will you join the Holy Spirit in interceding for the world?
Oceanby Kathy Jung
They saw the works of the Lord, his wonderful deeds in the deep.
For he spoke and stirred up a tempest that lifted high the waves.
- Psalm 107:24-25 (NIV)
In fear and amazement, they asked one another, “Who is this? He commands even the winds and the water, and they obey him.”
– Luke 8:25b (NIV)
Human beings have always been drawn to gaze at the beauty, vastness, power and mystery of our oceans. Standing on the shore, watching endless waves, we are reminded of just how small we are. And more often than not, this doesn’t lead us to fear, but instead to an unexpected calm. When our personal and global problems loom large, it is good to be small next to a God of beauty, vastness, power and mystery. It is good to dwell in the wonder of His presence, and not to be alone.
The oceans cover seventy-one percent of the surface of our earth. Oceans contain ninety-seven percent of all our water. If we could contain that water in a cube, it would be 1,332,000,000 kilometers in width, depth and height. On average, our oceans are 3.68 kilometers deep. That doesn’t sound too deep. But to descend a depth of 3.68 kilometers, would be like taking an elevator down 818 floors.
Standing on the shore, watching the rolling waves, we only get the tiniest glimpse of the magnitude of our oceans. There’s so much more to experience below the surface.
I’m no expert, but I wanted to share a little about how waves work:
- Wind blowing on the surface of water transfers its energy and creates small ripples. Large waves are a result of the wind blowing at higher speeds, for longer durations at greater distances.
“How can anyone,” said Nicodemus, “be born who has already been born and grown up?... Jesus said, “You’re not listening. Let me say it again. Unless a person submits to this original creation—the ‘wind-hovering-over-the-water’ creation, the invisible moving the visible, a baptism into a new life—it’s not possible to enter God’s kingdom. When you look at a baby, it’s just that: a body you can look at and touch. But the person who takes shape within is formed by something you can’t see and touch—the Spirit—and becomes a living spirit.
- John 3:4-6 (MSG)
- Besides wind, we know the gravity of the earth, moon and sun all have an effect on daily and seasonal tides.
The day is yours, and yours also the night; you established the sun and moon.
- Psalm 74:16 (NIV)
Your sun will never set again, and your moon will wane no more; the Lord will be your everlasting light, and your days of sorrow will end.
- Isaiah 60:20 (NIV)
- And artic waters that are saltier and colder, they sink, causing global ocean currents that take a thousand years to circle the earth. These currents shape our worldwide climate patterns and local weather.
The waters saw you, God, the waters saw you and writhed; the very depths were convulsed.
- Psalm 77:16 (NIV)
If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
- Psalm 139:8 (NIV)
Neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
- Romans 8:39 (NIV)
Needless to say, the cause and effect of waves, is complex. Waves at the surface are mesmerizing to watch. The happenings below that we don’t see, are profound. And all of it begins with a little ripple.
Being a follower of Christ is kind of like being a wave in the ocean. To observe from the safety of the shore can be a spectacular experience, but this pales in comparison to jumping in. The Spirit is a powerful wind that nudges and presses you forward. It can be a little unsettling at first. It’s energy and influence are the very reasons some would rather stay with their feet planted on the shore. But how different it is to get wet! To be soaked through, and to become part of something so much bigger than just you!
As hard as things get for me, for those I care for, and for those I see suffering, as the victim or as the perpetrator (still both suffering), prayer means there is never a time that I can do nothing. I am but a drop, but because I am part of the ocean, if I participate, matters immensely. In prayer, my eyes open to the reality that we are all in this together. And that there are deep forces beyond my understanding that swell and lengthen the reach and usefulness of the hope in my heart. The same God who’s spirit hovered over the waters at creation, so values me, that he invites me to participate in his kingdom objectives. And so honoured, I pray and sometimes I act. And then I watch, to see what the ocean will do.
In prayer, you are no longer an observer, passive on your mat on the beach. You are in motion, meditatively marinating in the wet cling of truth. Sometimes you seem to go forward only to be tossed back. You never really know all of what’s happening. You have lots of questions. Sometimes you’re given answers. And sometimes you’re given wisdom. Sometimes you feel too heavy to go anywhere. And yet you are in it, to wrestle, to discover, to have your rough exterior smoothed, and to know for yourself that power and what it might look like in you, if you let it. There is one who is closer than a brother (Psalm 18:24); closer than water on the skin. The words you mouth, and the soul meditations your heart bleeds, are the stuff of ceaseless prayers and intimate fellowship. Oh, what a vast ocean are the depths of meaning and friendship that are ours to be received!
And here’s my favourite part; Sometimes I get to do nothing, but enjoy being buoyant, jubilant. Like a child I am carried, rocked in safe arms, in the lullaby of the sea. This is peace and joy. This is worship.
I have allowed myself the pleasure of listening to this song again and again. And I share it with you, that you might take part in what He has freely given to you.