A man in the crowd answered, “Teacher, I brought you my son, who is possessed by a spirit that has robbed him of speech. Whenever it seizes him, it throws him to the ground. He foams at the mouth, gnashes his teeth and becomes rigid. I asked your disciples to drive out the spirit, but they could not … if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us.”
“‘If you can’?” said Jesus. “Everything is possible for him who believes.”
Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”
Mark 9:17,18, 22b-24, NIV*
We’ve been talking about Philippians 4 and thanksgiving vs. anxiety for a few weeks now, and the irony is not lost on me: Today started with a sense of restless urgency, and my prayers kept circling back to someone for whom I care deeply.
I reminded myself to pray with petition and thanksgiving, to trust God’s care. Several times. Somewhere in the cloud of nervous energy He helped me realize something: today’s issue isn’t about my loved one, it’s about me.
Is there an immediate problem or danger? No, although I sense trouble in the offing. Does God need to do anything about it this second? No, although I believe He has a plan and a timetable for action, and has been calling people to pray.
So where’s the trouble? It’s me, fretting. Not letting go as I pray. Not being confident in God’s ability to work all things to His glory and His children’s good.
This always brings me back to Mark’s story of the man and his son, as I echo the man’s words: “I believe. Help my unbelief.”
Jesus, help me believe You. You haven’t given me any specific word about this particular need, but I have plenty of truth in Your Word to cling to. You have already won the battle, and all authority in heaven and on earth belongs to You. Thank You for the peace You give when I finally stop long enough to remember Who You are. Thank You for what You will do, in the Father’s perfect timing and wisdom. Thank You for caring about me and my loved ones today.