Please Pray for Me
Verse 14 Is anyone among you sick? Let them call the elders of the church to pray over them and anoint them with oil in the name of the Lord.
We have talked about praying in times of trouble and times of happiness, today we will talk about the need of prayer during times we all experience, sickness.
We all know what it is like to be sick and while we all have experienced illness we don’t all experience it on the same level. Some of us have heard the doctor inform us that we have cancer and we know how the bottom falls out of our stomach at the word. Others of us have experienced other varying illnesses that have brought us to deaths door. Even the common cold can be experienced different by each of us depending on other health issues we may live with on a daily basis.
James was writing to people who knew these issues as well as any of us. He reminds them though that they don’t have to suffer in silence and solitude. When we are going through a serious illness it is so easy to think that we are in it by ourselves. No one knows our particular pain or struggles as we deal with it. But James is reminding his readers that isn’t how it is supposed to be in the Church. God has put us into community so that we feel each other’s hurts and struggles.
Of course we can’t actually physically feel the pain someone is experiencing but we can, and should, be there for them in the midst of it. This is why James says that if they are sick they should call the elders. These men were dedicated to the people and as representatives of the larger Church would pray over them anointing them with oil. By calling the elders for prayer there was submission to the leadership of the Church and an acknowledgement that one was not alone in their time of need. They didn’t have the fear that their illness was going to be made a point of gossip because they knew that they we loved by these leaders.
As a Church we have a responsibility to one another. We have the opportunity to bear with each other in ways the world only dreams of. We don’t just need to be aware of a fellow believers ailments, we can lovingly bring their need before the throne of the only One who can actually heal them. And while He may not heal them in the exact way that we want, we can know that they have been healed according to His will and that we were able to show the love that only a fellow Christian can.
Making It Personal
When is a time that you have asked for prayer from the Church? When have you enjoyed the privilege of praying for a fellow Christian? Who is needing prayers for healing today?
Making It Personal Kids
Have you ever needed prayer because you were sick? Have you ever prayed for someone else who was sick? Who is sick that you could pray for today?
Father, thank You for calling us before Your throne on each other’s behalf. Give us the love for one another that causes us to desire to pray for each other. In Jesus’ name, amen.