God is more interested in your spiritual growth, development of your character than a quick answer to your prayers!

Peace to you, dear friends! Praise God for the wonderful wisdom contained in the Word of God and for the opportunity to draw this wisdom for your personal daily use. We have been discussing the story of a Canaanite woman that was unrelenting in prayer for the freedom of her demon-possessed daughter. Yesterday our point was that humility, gratitude and worship open the door for miracles in our lives. Today we will learn some more lessons out of this story:
«Then Jesus went out from there and departed to the region of Tyre and Sidon. And behold, a woman of Canaan came from that region and cried out to Him, saying: “Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David! My daughter is severely demon-possessed.” But He answered her not a word. And His disciples came and urged Him, saying, “Send her away, for she cries out after us.” But He answered and said, “I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” Then she came and worshipped Him, saying, “Lord, help me!” But He answered and said, “It is not good to take the children’s bread and throw it to the little dogs.” And she said, “Yes, Lord, yet even the little dogs eat the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table.” Then Jesus answered and said to her, “O, woman, great is your faith! Let it be to you as you desire.” And her daughter was healed from that very hour» (Mathew, 15:21-28).
After the woman did all she knew to do, she heard from Jesus these words: « But He answered and said,
“It is not good to take the children’s bread and throw it to the little dogs» (Mathew, 15:26).
For many people this would sound like a terrible offense. He seemed to compare the woman to a dog. But, amazingly enough, the woman did not get offended; she continued to overcome the obstacles that appeared in her way. She heard something else in the words of Jesus. If you won’t learn to hear ‘deeper’ than what people are saying, you will be pulled into a vicious circle of offence and will lose your miracle. We see once again how important it is to learn to overcome ‘human factor’ that stands in the way of answered prayer. It seems to me that Jesus spoke these words in love. The woman saw the face of Jesus, so her reaction was different. So often it is the appearance, tone of voice and gestures that show the true intentions and motives of a person. Seeing Jesus and hearing His words, this woman felt and deeply experienced His love. The truth is that this woman was a hero who fought the fight of faith going after her miracle. And Jesus did not speak these words casually; He said what He said on purpose to help her release her faith. She had overcome many obstacles and had just one more step to make. Our Lord does not hurry to answer our prayers. God is more interested in your spiritual growth, development of your character than a quick answer to your prayers. It would not be hard for God to give you what you are asking for; it is a lot harder to cause changes in you and your character. Humans tend to be so ungrateful. The people of Israel were wandering through the desert; they called out to God, He answered them, but it did not change them. Afterwards, when a different problem came they called out to God again, and He answered them and gave what they had asked for. Nevertheless, their hearts remained unchanged. God can answer your prayers again and again, but it is not a guarantee of permanent changes in your life. Quite often God allows certain situations in our lives that help us to grow spiritually. In the desert, God wanted to teach the children of Israel, and for this reason answers did not come right away. For example, when they were thirsty, they asked Him for water. Three days went by, but there was still no water. Science proves that a person can survive without water for 3 days. God gave the children of Israel water in 3 days. When they saw the water they started to drink it, but it turned out to be bitter. And they began to grumble and complain, but God wanted to teach them something. Afterwards God changed the water and made it sweet. God teaches us through different situations, especially through situations with our children. In the story of the Canaanite woman we see that through the situation with her daughter God taught her to trust God with her problems and also to be a role model for her daughter. Through this situation she and her daughter learnt the ways of faith. Her faith brought her daughter’s healing. If this daughter were alive today, she would have told us this story of healing that came because of faith and sacrifices of her mother. The daughter gained life and health because her mother was consistent and tenacious in faith, love and prayer. It was a key moment in the life of this little girl. Every one of us can remember this type of moments in our lives that remind us of the faith and love of our mothers and how they protected us. I remember the moments when my mother spoke the words of encouragement to me: «I believe in you! You are a grateful person! You can be trusted! You know how to manage money!» I still remember the words of my mother. They still bring encouragement to me. They still resound in my heart. Parents play exceedingly important role in the life of their children. Their words contain tremendous power. God is calling you today to make sure that the words of people, their scorn and dislike for you would not hinder you from going forward. Do not let delays in your life make you bitter and offended. Trust God because He knows how to use the problems to create changes in your character. Let the problems strengthen your faith. I believe you will succeed! Praying for you, Pastor Rufus Ajiboye

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