Where Needed Most
Read: 2 Chronicles 20:10-12; Romans 8:23-27
Have you ever sought to understand someone's point of view and ended up learning a bit about yourself instead? That was exactly what happened to me the other day. The title of the blog written by James Emery White caught my attention. The post concerned Millennials and their giving. I discovered that I have something in common with those folks. No, not my age 😊. According to the author, Millennials like to give to a specific need, rather than to, for example, the general fund. I've said that same thing. In fact, when given a choice, I always choose the box that offers the opportunity to meet a specific need; so, I guess I have been thinking like a Millennial.
However, James Emery White challenged my thinking with a simple thought. The general operations of a ministry or church which honors the Lord, and of course one which uses finances appropriately, is as God-honoring and worthy of our support as the part of that ministry which, for example, helps rescue children out of human trafficking. That was very thought provoking to me. How many times have I skipped over the box that said "Where Needed Most"? I'll think before I automatically do that in the future, knowing that a ministry which is trustworthy to use funds for a specific need will also be faithful to channel undesignated funds wisely, when given the opportunity.
That revelation was followed by another one as I was reading in Romans 8. I read the verses again that speak of our not knowing what to pray for and how the Holy Spirit prays through us, according to the will of God, Romans 8:26-27. In all honesty, I'm most content when I can hold out a promise of God that matches the need on my heart. That honors God, and it is a good thing to speak His promises humbly back to Him. However, there are times when we bring broken people or broken hearts to God's throne, and we don't know how to pray. When we don't know what the Father is doing or how He will work in a situation, we rely on the Holy Spirit to use our prayers "where needed most". Often, we can't imagine how the Lord could redeem our circumstances or those that our loved ones are facing. Perhaps, we can't really voice a word other than Lord, please help. Yet, in our weakness, the Lord doesn't need us to come up with eloquent words or even a workable plan, we merely need to run to Him, resting in the fact that if we can trust Him with the specific requests that we know are His will, we can also allow Him to take our cries and work in the situations in all the places and ways that He alone knows need His attention and care.
I love the simple prayer in 2 Chronicles 20:10-12, especially verse 12. An army that could crush Judah was coming for them. Their king's admission was true. They were powerless, they didn't know what to do, and they were looking to God. They had no plan, but they cried out to the One Who did, and the Lord answered and brought them victory. Someone might wonder, and it is an understandable question, how do we know that we can trust the God we cannot see? How can we know that He knows what is needed most? No doubt, many answers to this question could be given.
Let's look at only one for now. It is found in Romans 8:32. Here we are reminded of not only the trustworthiness of God, but also of His loving kindness. This verse begins by highlighting the greatest gift that could be given, Jesus' death on our behalf. This is the Savior's providing for us what was needed most. Surely, the Father's provision here is proof of His love and willingness to help us here and now. Since God willingly did this, He can also be trusted to supply our earthly needs. This is true, even when we can't find words to express what we are feeling or even needing in any given situation. He will work "where needed most".
Lord, Forgive us when we forget Your love and struggle to trust You. Help us remember Your ongoing faithfulness.