“Plug in the Power"
It can be depressing to read the headlines in the morning paper (if your town still has a morning paper). Unemployment figures are reaching record highs. Bankruptcies are up. Wages and earnings are down. And the list goes on. Lots of bad news.
For us seniors, everything has changed. The market collapse bled trillions of dollars out of retirement accounts and people aged forty-five to sixty are having to rethink their retirement plans:
- 60 percent expect to delay retirement
- 20 percent stopped putting money into their retirement nest eggs
- 25 percent took money out of retirement accounts to pay for their current expenses
A record number of people in their 60’s are looking for a job instead of a place to retire. By 2016, AARP estimates the workforce over age fifty-five will grow five times faster than the overall labor force.
With so much uncertainty, so much change, so much confusion, what do we need to do to deal with it all? How do we find the right answers to our many questions? How do we find peace in chaos? Our teaching Pastor reminded us of the same answer we were given since we were children – “Pray.”
Pray without ceasing – 1 Thessalonians 5:17
The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. – James 5:16
We don’t have the answers. We’re even confused about the questions. But God does. He knows what is best for us. We have to trust in that and plug into His power, His wisdom, and His grace. Pray, pray, pray is what Pastor Stephens told us. Keep going to Him over and over again. Pray without ceasing.
Max Lucado tells the story about a lady who had a small house on the seashore of Ireland at the turn of the century. She was quite wealthy but also quite frugal. The people were surprised, then, when she decided to be among the first to have electricity in her home. Several weeks after the installation, a meter reader appeared at her door. He asked if her electricity was working and she assured him it was. “I’m wondering if you can explain something to me,” he said. “Your meter shows scarcely any usage. Are you using your power?”
“Certainly,” she answered. “Each evening when the sun sets, I turn on my lights just long enough to see to light my candles and I turn the power off.” She tapped into the power but doesn’t use it.
Don’t we make the same mistake? We have the power of prayer available to us 24/7 to help us, to guide us, to give us strength, but we don’t use it. As my daughter use to say when she was about 4 years old, “I’ll do it myself.” Unfortunately, that’s the choice far too many people make on a daily basis. They try to carry the load alone or solve the problem by themselves. Plug into the power of Jesus. That’s what He asked us to do.