“Help” is a prayer that is always answered. It doesn’t matter how you pray—with your head bowed in silence, or crying out in grief, or dancing. —Anne Lamott, Plan B: Further Thoughts on Faith
Parents, you know about getting the baby to sleep. On that first night at home together, the baby cries, and both mom and dad jump out of bed like a shot of adrenaline, run down the hall, throw open the nursery door, and elbow each other out of the way to pick up the baby.
On the second night, the husband sleeps through the whole thing. But that first night—oh, that first night—you both run to the cry.
In Luke 9 and Mark 9, a father brings his only son to Jesus, desperate for healing. His boy had nearly died too many times—death by fire, death by water. I wonder if that boy and his family had stopped taking walks near the water. I wonder if the family’s evening Torah reading around the fire had stopped as well.
In his desperation, the father pleads with Jesus, “If you can do anything, take pity on us and help us” (Mark 9:22).
Jesus repeats the father’s words, “‘If you can’? Everything is possible for one who believes” (Mark 9:23).
Everything is possible. Is Jesus a magic genie? No. But He does want us to remove our mental limitations regarding God’s abilities. When we trust, limits are erased, and God’s power can do as He pleases in our lives and ministries. To trust is to believe.
The boy’s father cries out, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!” (Mark 9:24).
The Greek word for help is a compound word that means “run to the cry.”
Help me believe! Jesus runs to the cry.
Help my son! Jesus runs to the cry.
Help me trust! Jesus runs to the cry.
We can trust Jesus to respond to our pleas as well.
Lord, what am I crying out for today? What area of my life needs hope and trust in You? You ran to me. I turn all areas of unbelief over to You, trusting You’ll do what only You can do through me. Amen.
Learn more from Pete’s teaching on Luke, What Will Jesus Do?