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Call 911

There was an article in the paper the other day about a woman who smelled something burning and called 911. The fire department arrived and discovered a smoldering electrical cord and saw it burst into flames before their eyes. They were able to put the fire out immediately with no damage. That was one smart lady. She called for help at the first whiff of trouble. What if she had ignored the smell, thinking it would go away? Perhaps she should have tried to fix the problem herself instead of bothering the fire department. No, the problem would not have gone away but would have only worsened by her neglect. She was not trained or equipped to fix it herself and would only have made matters worse by the delay. She would have been a foolish lady to have handled the situation any other way. But we sometimes do those very things: either ignore the problem or try to fix the situation ourselves. If we are ignoring the problem, we are delaying answers or completely missing out on the blessings of God. If we are trying to fix things ourselves we are settling for mediocre lives and living by the power of the flesh instead of in the power of God.

We Christians have our own emergency system; it is found in Psalm 50:15: "And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me" (See also Psalm 91:15 and Jeremiah 33:3). When they installed the 911 system in our town they ask us to call 811 to test it. I was surprised to learn that they knew where I lived and who I was without telling them, but I would have to call and state my need for them to respond. Of course God knows all about us and already knows our need, but we must acknowledge that we have a need then call upon God and tell Him our need. The first part is the hardest. We try to ignore that we have a need (I must be strong and not let this bother me) or try to take care of it ourselves (wrestling and fretting over it in our minds). When we call upon God, we are acknowledging our dependence upon Him and getting out of His way so that He can work in our lives. We are letting go of our self-effort and self-sufficiency and trusting in His power and all sufficiency. The last part of our verse says: and thou shalt glorify me. Seeing answers to our prayers and seeing God working in our lives will humble us and cause us to glorify Him. So let's learn to call upon Him at the first whiff of trouble.

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