Recently two Florida teens were swimming in the ocean when they were pulled away from shore. They found themselves two miles from shore. The waves were choppy and the current was strong. After treading water for two hours, their strength was giving out. Hope was gone as reality was setting in. In desperation they cried out to God, “If you really have a plan for our lives, just bring something!” It was about that time that a boat named “The Amen” was going by, thought they heard something in the water and found them. They were rescued from their situation and returned safely to shore.
I haven’t been in a situation like that before, but I have been desperate for God to answer in a hopeless situation. Desperate prayers cut through our religious jargon we like to say to God. They are the most authentic prayers and that’s why I believe God answers so many of them. Our need for God to move will increase our faith in Him and His ability to intervene. God desires that we would have that same desperation for Him even when our circumstances aren’t dictating that need. We are all eternally hopeless without Him. It’s time our lives, our prayers and our relationship with Him reflected that kind of desperation.
Here are some Bible verses on desperation.
1. I was desperate for you to help me in my struggles, and you did!
Psalms 120:1 TPT
2. When the woman realized she couldn’t hide any longer, she came and fell trembling at Jesus’ feet. Before the entire crowd she declared, “I was desperate to touch you, Jesus, for I knew if I could just touch even the fringe of your robe I would be healed.”
Luke 8:47 TPT
3. For when I was desperate, overwhelmed, and about to give up, you were the only one there to help. You gave me a way of escape from the hidden traps of my enemies.
Psalms 142:3 TPT
4. GOD is good, a hiding place in tough times. He recognizes and welcomes anyone looking for help, No matter how desperate the trouble.
Nahum 1:7 MSG
5. When I had nothing, desperate and defeated, I cried out to the Lord and he heard me, bringing his miracle-deliverance when I needed it most.
Psalms 34:6 TPT
We all know the story of the first Thanksgiving. After enduring such hardships, hunger, and death, the Pilgrims had an abundant harvest and stopped to thank God for His provision. Not taking anything away from that incredible day, but I’ve found it’s easy to praise God during the harvest. It’s easy to celebrate His goodness in times of plenty, but what about in times of hardship? How thankful were they when they were rationed a couple of kernels a day to survive on? How thankful are we in our hardships?
I’ve found that thankfulness and joy come from the heart and not from my circumstances. No matter how hard life gets, how dark our days are, how desolate we feel, we can still find a reason to have joy. It’s so important that we find that reason too. Nehemiah 8:10 reminds us that the joy of the Lord is our strength in times when we don’t have the strength to face the day. Joy gives hope and reminds us that God is still on His throne no matter what comes against us.
Habakkuk painted a picture of dark times in chapter 3:17-18. He wrote, “Even though the fig trees have no fruit and no grapes grow on the vines, even though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no grain, even though the sheep all die and the cattle stalls are empty, I will still be joyful and glad, because the Lord God is my savior” (GNT). He was saying even though the seeds planted didn’t yield a harvest, he’d still be joyful. Even through failure, there is a reason to be glad. Even if your savings are wiped out and there’s no food on your table, you can give thanks.
Don’t let the enemy use circumstances to steal your joy. Don’t let the thief come in and take your focus off of your provider. No matter how bad life gets, we must purpose in our hearts to find joy so we keep our perspective right. We can say, “Even so, it is well with my soul.” We can say, “I will still be joyful and glad,” because God is still on His throne and our circumstances will never change that. We can find joy in the pain. We can find hope in desperation because the Lord God is our savior. It won’t change our circumstances, but it will change our perspective. It will give us strength to endure anything. Find your joy in the Lord, not in your circumstances.
Each one of us comes under attack throughout our lives. Sometimes those attacks are spiritual. These can happen any time, but they especially show up when you start praying strategically and walk in the purpose and plan God has got you. There are times when the attacks are physical as well. These are attacks against your physical person by people deserved or not. Then there are mental attacks. These are often generated by something some said to you, something negative that’s happened to you, or can be destructive self talk you’ve entertained.
In life, it’s not a matter of if you will be attacked one of these ways, it’s a matter of when. As a child of God though, you don’t have to be afraid of any of these attacks. You don’t have to worry that they will destroy you and everything you’ve worked for. You can have peace in the middle of an all out adult on your life because of the promise God gives us in Isaiah 54;17. It says, “But no weapon that is formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue that shall rise against you in judgment you shall show to be in the wrong. This [peace, righteousness, security, triumph over opposition] is the heritage of the servants of the Lord [those in whom the ideal Servant of the Lord is reproduced]; this is the righteousness or the vindication which they obtain from Me [this is that which I impart to them as their justification], says the Lord” (AMP).
No weapon formed against you shall prosper. This is your heritage as a servant of the Lord! It doesn’t say that you won’t be attacked. It doesn’t say that you won’t suffer damage from the attacks. It says they won’t succeed in destroying you. Because of that, we can have peace, security, and victory over the attack. You are not a victim. You are a victor. You are not a loser. You are a winner. You are not the sum of your failures. You are successful in Him. You are not condemned because of your past. You are righteous according to God’s grace.
Your current situation may not have you feeling like victory is possible. It may seem like there’s no way to win, let alone get out of it. I’ll remind you that there is nothing impossible for God. Your heritage in Him is not defeat. It’s victory over this attack. Claim your victory and ask God to impart to you that which is rightfully yours as His servant. The attacks and suffering may continue for a season, but they will not succeed in destroying you. Your vindication is your coming victory. Walk in it today.
This morning I was praying for a friend’s daughter who recently had a stroke. I saw my friend’s Facebook post wishing she could hear her daughter speak to her again. I could hear the desperation in her voice through the printed words on my screen. I began to call out in desperation with her for God to hear her prayer and to answer it. As I prayed, my mind went back to a scripture that God took me to this morning in Ephesians 3. The Message puts verse 20 like this, “God can do anything, you know – far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams!”
As I continued to pray, I asked, “God, I know you can do anything. How do I get you to go from can do to action?” I know God has the ability. I need Him to not just have the ability, but to actually do. I then though that I have the ability to do so much, what motivates me to move into action? It’s usually when someone or something demands my attention the most that causes me to put it at the front of my action items. It’s when something becomes the most pressing thing that I usually act.
My mind then went to the story in Luke 5 and Mark 2 of a paraplegic man who needed healing. He didn’t have the ability to get into God’s presence on his own. He had the desire, but lacked the strength. It was four of his friends who carried him to Jesus. When they got there, the house that Jesus was in was so crowded that no one could get in or out. I don’t know how long those friends tried to get in or if they tried to reason with others that their friend had a more desperate need to see Jesus than they did. What I do know is that they weren’t going to sit idly by and let there friend remain that way. They weren’t going to wait for Jesus to come out of the house.
Instead, they carried him to the roof, pulled the roof off tile by tile until they were above where Jesus was. They then lowered their friend into the presence of Jesus who had the ability to do far more than they could imagine in their wildest dreams. They caused Jesus to act. They caused Him to turn His attention to that friend and to say, “Get up. Take your bedroll and go home.” He was moved from can do anything to doing something because the friends wouldn’t quit.
We all need friends who are willing to carry us into the presence of an all mighty God who can do anything. We need friends who won’t stop or stay at the back of the line when we are in desperate need for a touch from God. We need friends who when the door to the Throne Room is blocked and the area around Jesus is crowded that will not give up and go to the roof of Heaven, tear back the tiles and put us at the feet of Jesus. Jesus said where two or three are gathered, I’m with them. This man had four friends gathered to put him in the presence of Jesus.
You may be on that mat today without the ability to get in front of Jesus. You may need some friends to join with you in your desperation to put you in the front of the line where you have Jesus’ full attention. If that’s you, comment below. Tell those who read this what you need prayer for. We can be those friends who carry you to Jesus when there seems to be no way into His presence. We’ll tear off the roof and lower you down to where He is. We won’t stop until Jesus goes from can do to action. If you’re reading this and have the ability, I’m asking you to join me in prayer today for those who don’t have the ability and are in desperate need for a touch from God.