I started reading a book last week called "Beyond the Closet Door" by Freddi Trammell. She is an amazing writer! She is one of the prayer warriors that you'd read about in a book - no pun intended. She's written many books and is a travelling speaker. Anyway this book like many she writes is on prayer. I wanted to share a portion of the second chapter with you.
Trammell starts the chapter describing the story of a lady named Bernadette who was experiencing an extreme amount of pain. So, much that she missed church at times. On this particular occasion Bernadette hid away in her closet of prayer, and prayed a prayer something like this: "Lord, you know my physical condition. I do not understand why these knots are growing in the upper part of my body. The swelling is enormous, and the pain is almost unbearable. Jesus I am going to your house tonight. I desperately need a healing touch from you. I must seek medical help if I fail to receive help from You tonight."
Mrs. Trammell was speaking at the service Bernadette was going to that night. She spoke on prayer. During prayer time Mrs. Trammell was lead to call out Bernadette, who stepped forward. She and the congregation read and prayed Jeremiah 17:14 over Bernadette. To make the verse more personal they inserted Bernadette's name in place of the pronouns. They prayed --"Heal Bernadette, O Lord, and she shall be healed; save Bernadette, and she shall be saved; for thou art Bernadette's praise."
A jubilant Bernadette testified that while the Word was prayed she felt the sensation of a whirlwind of fire swirling through her chest area. All the knots had disappeared. The swelling had dissipated and the pain was gone!
(now I will quote from the book rather than paraphrase:)
Bernadette chose to BELIEVE the Master was her deliverer rather than to accept a disease into her body! She spent time alone with Him and God honored her honest confession and dependence upon Him.What are you willing to do rather than accept what sin and the devil have waiting for you?
The "rather than" principle should be applied when the enemy begins to bombard our minds with anything less than what God has planned for us. Examples in scripture prove God will come to our rescue when we meet with Him in sincerity and truth:
Moses, rather than enjoy sin for a season, chose to suffer some afflictions in the flesh and be one of God's leaders.
Ruth, rather than stay with her own people, went with her mother-in-law and chose to be used of God and become instrumental in the birthing of the Messiah.
Esther, rather than continue to live in luxury, and ease, chose to take advantage of God's timing and save her people.
Rahab, rather than refuse to become involved with the spies God sent to spy out the land, chose to hide them in her house; thus saving her entire household from destruction.
Jesus, rather than call ten thousand angels to deliver Him from the cross, chose to give His life's blood for the saving of those who will believe in Him.
(there where more, however, I chose the most common for the sake of space.)
Are you willing to give up some time for prayer, study and communion with Jesus rather than spend time doing something with your friends, that will not mean anything tomorrow?
What is your rather than story?
Yours for Jesus rather than the devil,