“In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us.” (Rom. 8:26)
Have you ever strained for what to say to a person at a critical moment? Perhaps it is a friend who has lost a spouse or child; maybe it’s a friend who is depressed from losing his or her job, or a teenage son or daughter in need of correction. In such moments, do we ask God and the Holy Spirit to give us the right words?
A few years ago, I came home and my wife said a former secretary from my work at Mobil had called and wanted me to call her back. “She didn’t sound well,” my wife said. I was astounded. It had been more than forty years since she had been my secretary! What could she possibly be calling for?
I called her back. She was indeed very ill. She had had cancer, followed by a stroke, and was now confined to a wheel chair. She thought she was dying, and she wanted to thank me for encouraging her to go back to school to finish her college education so she could move into higher level jobs. She did complete her degree in an evening program, and later enjoyed a successful career at Mobil moving through several positions.
As I was talking with her, I was prompted to pray with her, but I was resistant. I started to have a second conversation in my mind with the Lord. Since I am used to praying in the name of Jesus, I asked the Lord, “How do I pray for her? She is Jewish.” The thought came into my mind, “Pray in the name of the Father.” So I asked if she would like me to pray with her.
She said yes. So, I prayed in the name of the Father to bring her comfort and healing. I finished by saying , “Marilyn, I am going to continue to pray that you will be able to get out of that wheel chair and walk again on your own, and when you do, I want you to call me and let me know.
A few months later I received a call. “Mr. Dalgetty, you told me to call you when I was able to get out of this wheel chair and walk. Today, I took my first steps!”
The Holy Spirit is always present to give us the right words for the circumstances before us. Jesus says all we have to do is ask. (Luke 11:13)
In challenging circumstances, do you call on the Holy Spirit to give you the right words?