SOAP Devotional 2014-03-18
Scripture – Observation – Application – Prayer
Are any of you suffering hardships? You should pray. Are any of you happy? You should sing praises. Are any of you sick? You should call for the elders of the church to come and pray over you, anointing you with oil in the name of the Lord. Such a prayer offered in faith will heal the sick, and the Lord will make you well. And if you have committed any sins, you will be forgiven. (James 5:13-15 NLT)
Going through a tough time? Prayer is where you find answers. Are you sad and discouraged? Sing praises to the Lord to counteract this sadness. Are you sick? You should call for the elders in the church to pray for you and anoint you in the name of the Lord, and their prayer, prayed in faith will heal you and the Lord will make you well. Plus if you have committed sins, you will be forgiven.
God has things we should do if we are suffering. They are just common sense to believers. Sometimes when people are down they say, “all we can do is pray” like that is some kind of last resort. No! That is exactly what you should do first! Instead of “”all we can do is pray” say “but, thank God we can pray!” Singing praises of the good things God has done in your life easily begins to take your focus off the things that make you sad today, so do this when you are sad. The last one, I think we get wrong. We tell the pastor that we heard that someone is sick so he should go pray for them. Actually this passage says that the person who is sick should call on the elders in the church. If you are sick, you should call! And you get an added bonus to your healing, if sin is what opened the door to your sickness you will be forgiven. Note the word “if” here. Sickness is usually not the result of sin, but IF it is, you will be forgiven.
Father, let me always be drawn to you, but even more so when I am going through difficult times. Let me call on you rather than wallowing in my troubles. Let me sing your praises at all times so that I can ward off sadness in the first place. And let me be quick to call on the elders of the church when I need healing so that I can be obedient to your word and receive my healing.