The religious ruler, common man, nobleman–all unleashed God’s power through prayer. Parenthood is an overwhelming project. We must communicate with the author of the plan.
“Don’t be afraid; just believe” (Mark 5:36, Luke 8:50).
The Daughter of the Religious Ruler
Jarius was a ruler of the synagogue. But religion wasn’t enough to bring his daughter back from death. However, Jarius went to the one who could make his daughter whole again. Jesus told him “Don’t be afraid; just believe.” Read Jarius’ story here:
Then one of the synagogue rulers, named Jairus, came there. Seeing Jesus, he fell at his feet and pleaded earnestly with him, “My little daughter is dying. Please come and put your hands on her so that she will be healed and live.” So Jesus went with him. A large crowd followed and pressed around him.
While Jesus was still speaking, some men came from the house of Jairus, the synagogue ruler. “Your daughter is dead,” they said. “Why bother the teacher any more?”
Ignoring what they said, Jesus told the synagogue ruler, “Don’t be afraid; just believe.”
He took her by the hand and said to her, “Talitha koum!” (which means, “Little girl, I say to you, get up!”). Immediately the girl stood up and walked around (she was twelve years old). At this they were completely astonished.
The Son of the Ordinary Man
This man in this story was a common guy who blended in with the crowd, but his son had a problem. This parent took it to Jesus. He may have been just one of a huge multitude to everyone else, but he and his son were important to Jesus. Jesus told him, “Everything is possible for him who believes.” Here’s his story:
A man in the crowd answered, “Teacher, I brought you my son, who is possessed by a spirit that has robbed him of speech. Whenever it seizes him, it throws him to the ground. He foams at the mouth, gnashes his teeth and becomes rigid. I asked your disciples to drive out the spirit, but they could not.
“It has often thrown him into fire or water to kill him. But if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us.”
“`If you can’?” said Jesus. “Everything is possible for him who believes.”
Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”
When Jesus saw that a crowd was running to the scene, he rebuked the evil spirit. “You deaf and mute spirit,” he said, “I command you, come out of him and never enter him again.”
The spirit shrieked, convulsed him violently and came out. The boy looked so much like a corpse that many said, “He’s dead.” But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him to his feet, and he stood up.
After Jesus had gone indoors, his disciples asked him privately, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?”
He replied, “This kind can come out only by prayer.”
The Child of the Nobleman
The nobleman’s power and affluence could not save his son from death. But the nobleman went to the right place. Jesus told him, “You may go. Your son will live.” Read it here:
Once more he visited Cana in Galilee, where he had turned the water into wine. And there was a certain royal official whose son lay sick at Capernaum. When this man heard that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judea, he went to him and begged him to come and heal his son, who was close to death.
“Unless you people see miraculous signs and wonders,” Jesus told him, “you will never believe.”
The royal official said, “Sir, come down before my child dies.”
Jesus replied, “You may go. Your son will live.”
The man took Jesus at his word and departed. While he was still on the way, his servants met him with the news that his boy was living. When he inquired as to the time when his son got better, they said to him, “The fever left him yesterday at the seventh hour.”
Then the father realized that this was the exact time at which Jesus had said to him, “Your son will live.” So he and all his household believed.
The religious ruler, the ordinary man, and the nobleman–all went to the one who could meet their children’s needs. We must go to the one who can meet our children’s needs as well. Parenthood is an overwhelming project. The only way we can accomplish the task successfully is to communicate with the one who wrote the plan!
We cannot know what kind of parents we need to be aside from prayer. We cannot know the God who can help us apart from prayer. We cannot experience the fulfillment of the promises of God unless we claim them through prayer. We cannot make it without prayer.
The most important thing we can do for our children is to pray for them. Prayer must be the first step and the last step. Prayer must be the backdrop of all the in-between steps. Only through prayer can we be equipped to be the mothers our children need. Prayer is the catalyst that unleashes God’s intervention and power in our children’s lives.
Let us go to him now in prayer for our children. He has the right answer for us!
Thought to Remember
Our children are living in a world that seeks to destroy them in its clutches of wickedness. Jesus never turned away a parent who came to him in sincerity. He always had an answer for them, and he has an answer for you.
Questions for Discussion
- What is the most important thing we can do for our children?
- What is the first step?
- What is the last step?
- What should we do in-between these steps?
Scripture taken from New International Version unless otherwise noted