It was Jake’s turn.
At the start of each month, one member of our family selects a chapter from the Bible to read together. We read the verses of that chapter for a whole month. Yet, on Wednesdays, we read the verses a little differently. We call Wednesdays – “Pick a Verse Day.” On Wednesdays, each member chooses one verse to share that means something to them.
Since October is Jake’s birthday month, it was his turn to determine which chapter our family would read together.
Jake chose James 5. So, for the past 26 days or so, we’ve been reading this chapter daily.
Recently, on “Pick a Verse Day”, Jake selected James 5: 17 -18 to talk about. Jake knew that our region of the world is desperate for rain. D E S P E R A T E . Dams have run dry. Severe water restrictions are in place. Without rain, we are in trouble. Jake chose this verse because he sees how dry everything is and how much our friends need rain. Rain must fall to help our friends plant and grow their crops, fill their boreholes and dams, do their washing, be hydrated and healthy and so much more.
Jake chose James 5: 17 -18 to emphasize our need of rainfall:
Elijah was a human being, even as we are. He prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the land for three and a half years. Again, he prayed, and the heavens gave rain, and the earth produced its crops.
New International Version, James 5: 17-18
Jake has asked, more than one time since that “Pick a Verse” Wednesday, “We need it to rain, God. Where is the rain???”
It’s been a good question.
Where has the rain been keeping itself?
We’ve had hardly a drop!
But that hasn’t deterred Jake from praying.
I love these verses that Jake chose because it emphasizes something special. It says that Elijah was a human being – even as we are.
In the Living Bible, Elijah is described “as completely human as we are….”
In the Message, we read “Elijah, for instance, human just like us….”
In the New American Standard Bible Version, “Elijah was a man with a nature like ours….”
Elijah, the man who confronted and rebuked kings, the miracle worker who restored a child to life, the man of faith who prayed a three and a half year drought into existence, the prophet whose prayers were answered with raining fire, the diviner who parted the Jordan river, and the man who ascended to heaven in a chariot of fire, this man who appeared at the transfiguration with Jesus – this man? This man known as the prophet of fire?
This man was a man as human as we and with a nature like our own?
Do we believe this truth?
It’s quite incomprehensible.
Yet, I believe it.
In fact, I see that Elijah, this amazing prayer warrior, was just like Jake. Elijah needed his God to show up and make it rain. Jake has had the same request. Jake has been asking his God to make the clouds burst over southern Africa.
You see, just like Elijah, just like Jake, we are all on a lifelong journey toward our God. Each of our paths is unique and different. Yet, we all have the potential to pray in earnest, unceasingly, with power from the Holy Spirit and with the faith and conviction of our souls to seek God for his help and his answers.
Jake has been praying and praying and praying for rain.
So, guess what happened today?
On Jake’s birthday?
It started to rain.
A birthday gift – not only for Jake, but for all in this region of the world.
We haven’t had a significant amount of rain fall yet. However, it’s been far more than we’ve had in months and months!
I don’t know what you are praying for currently in your life. It could be anything.
A breakthrough in your job search
A healing miracle for your family member or friend
A joyous reunion with a straying child
A blessing of long-awaited funds
A salvation prayer answered
Or any other heart’s cry to our Lord for his abundant love, care and provision to rain upon your life in a specific way.
Don’t stop praying.
Don’t stop calling.
Don’t stop asking.
Be like Elijah. Be like Jake. Be specific. Be expectant : “We need it to rain, God. Where is the rain???”
We need your healing, God. Where is your healing?
We need your provision, Lord. Where is your provision?
We need your intervention, God. Where is your intervention?
We need your protection, Lord. Where is your protection?
We need your touch, Father. Where is your touch?
We need it to rain, God. Where is your rain?
We can pray and ask. We can be sure that the Lord will answer. Of course, his answers come in his way, out of his infinite love, according to his purpose and timing and for his kingdom to come. And that’s what we ultimately want, isn’t it? We seek his will to be done on earth as it is in heaven.
And so just like Elijah, and just like Jake, we seek our Lord for his presence and care in our lives as we grow in wholeness, holiness, faith, and love.
We keep praying.
We keep seeking.
We keep trusting.
May the rains of God come.