Tag Archive: savior


When Others Fail Us

2 Timothy 4:9-14

The apostle Paul knew the value of having good friends. Barnabas encouraged him in his ministry. Silas partnered with him in establishing new churches. Timothy became like a son to him. Paul also knew the heartache of co-laborers turning away from him when times got tough (2 Tim. 1:15). We may experience something similar in our life.

People will react differently to our struggles. Some feel inadequate and hold back because they are uncertain about what to say or do. Others are so protective of their time that selfishness causes them to turn away. And sometimes our friends and co-workers do not want to be identified with us in our trials. In my early days as a pastor, this happened to me when the church was going through a period of turmoil. Only two pastors reached out to me and offered support; the others stood back. This experience taught me the importance of reaching out to people in crisis.

Helping others requires an investment of time and energy. We start by praying for them and asking the Lord how we can help. He may have us lend emotional support, provide spiritual guidance, offer assistance in a physical or financial way, or find others who can. Standing with people will encourage them.

When friends abandoned him, Paul asked God not to count their actions against them. He followed the example of Jesus, who prayed for the Father to forgive His persecutors. What’s your response when friends let you down? Forgiveness is the choice that pleases God every time.

Mark 1:35-37

Our Father does not consider prayer an optional part of the Christian life. The Bible tells us that two-way communication with God is essential.

The discipline of prayer includes . . .

  • An expectant attitude. We must believe that God has something important to say to us. It could be a strengthening reminder of His love, insight into our situation, or the answer to a petition. With such an outlook, we’ll be listening more than we are speaking.
  • A focus on our heavenly Father. When we praise the Lord, our minds will let go of worldly things and center on Him. Thinking of His perfect character and sacrifice at the cross readies us to hear from Him and obey.
  • A willingness to see ourselves the way that God does. The Holy Spirit works in us to produce Christlikeness. That means uncovering what is unholy and replacing it with righteousness. It also includes recognizing when we demonstrate godly character (Gal. 5:22-23).
  • A surrender to His leadership. When we submit to Him as Lord, our petitions will be more in line with His will.
  • A regular “appointment.” Developing a strong faith-life takes commitment. Daily activities will crowd out time with the Lord unless we set a time and place to pray.

Everywhere Jesus traveled, the multitudes approached Him with their needs. Even though there were many people to help, our Savior regularly took time to pray. He’d step away from the demands of the crowd to interact with His Father (Mark 6:45-46). Won’t you give prayer that same priority?