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JFH Devotionals by J.M. Farro

A God Who Bends Down To Listen

"I love the Lord because He hears my voice and my prayer for mercy. Because He bends down to listen, I will pray as long as I have breath!" - Psalm 116:1-2 NLT

One of the things I love most about God is that He is more than willing to relate to us on our own level. Too often, Christians think of the Lord as being way up yonder in heaven at a distance, and too busy to concern Himself with our earthly, mundane affairs. But the truth is that God longs to be intimately involved with every aspect of our lives. And as we seek Him through prayer and the study of His Word, He will prove it to us time and time again.

Recently, I had some major oral surgery done. It was a nasty procedure that I had to have performed once before, and my first experience was so negative that I feared and dreaded having to repeat it. This time, I vowed that I would be prepared. I asked my surgeon for pain medication, and I stocked up on other preparations and supplements that I thought would ease my discomfort. Several days after the surgery, I began to get very, very sick. I sought the Lord for His wisdom and guidance, and He led me to a verse in the Bible that spoke to my heart in a profound way. "Go up into Gilead and take [healing] balm... In vain do you use many medicines..." (Jeremiah 46:11 AMP) Immediately, in my spirit, I saw the error of my ways, and I repented for my foolishness. Instead of trusting the Lord for my recovery, and using the necessary healing aids sparingly, I had panicked and filled myself with harmful combinations of "many medicines". I thanked and praised God for getting my attention in a way that I could really relate to and understand.

Some time ago, I had the opportunity to attend a function that I had some misgivings about. I earnestly sought the Lord about what He would have me do. I wavered back and forth for days, knowing I had to make a decision. I prayed for God to make His will clear to me, vowing to follow His lead, no matter where it would take me. Then during my quiet time one day, He showed me a Scripture that opened my eyes and settled the matter at once: "Stay at home! Why ask for trouble and cause your own downfall...?" (2 Kings 14:10 NIV)

Years ago, I had my first tooth crowned. I never realized what a long, tedious process it was, and now can I heartily sympathize with anyone who has to have this procedure done. The crown was going to be noticeable when I smiled, so I was very concerned about its appearance. As I poured my heart out to the Lord about it, He led me to a verse in Isaiah 61:3 (NIV), which reassured me that He would "bestow on [me] a crown of beauty".

I am sharing these things with you today because I want you to know that God cares for you so much that He is eager to relate to you on your own level, no matter where you might be spiritually. The Lord wants you to continually experience spiritual growth, but He doesn't wait until you're mature in your faith to speak to you. And He will speak to you about anything and everything that concerns you, if you will seek Him. The psalmist wrote: "I love the Lord because He hears my voice and my prayer for mercy. Because He bends down to listen, I will pray as long as I have breath!" (Psalm 116:1-2 NLT) God is so merciful and good - and He loves you so much - that He is willing to "bend down" and listen to your concerns, and answer in ways you can understand.

Don't wait a minute longer. Turn to Him right now with those things that are on your heart - and receive the wisdom, comfort, and reassurance that can only come from a loving God.

Prayer: Lord, forgive me for all of the opportunities I've missed to have You intimately involved with my life. Help me to seek You with a greater passion than ever before. Give me a hunger for Your Word that will move me to read, study, and obey it. Thank You for speaking words of life, hope, and healing when I need them most.

- J. M. Farro


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This Friday, January 27, 2023
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