By Lorraine Walker
â€œUse your common sense!â€ Growing up as a farmerâ€™s daughter, life was based on a common-sense approach to problem solving. If it was sunny, you worked the fields because you knew that it would rain and then you wouldnâ€™t be able to. Common sense. If the tractor sounded funny or the cow limped, youâ€™d better take a close look because something was wrong and if you didnâ€™t get it fixed, youâ€™d have worse problems in the future. Common sense.
I have to admit that common sense was not my first nature. I donâ€™t know, maybe it really isnâ€™t based in any of us as children, but I have always been a thinker and a dreamer, and didnâ€™t always exhibit the best sense. I did learn how to tap into this well of practicality and it has served me well in my working life. I learned how to read situations and people and that is a lesson not taught in any school. My parents were great teachers!
Sometimes, however, common sense can be a hindrance when it comes up against the wall of faith. Common sense tells you that the situation will not change; faith dares you to believe that God can change it. I was praying about a certain situation for months and it did not appear to change. Then God showed me a different way to pray specifically for an area of the situation that I hadnâ€™t even thought of. Common sense told me that for that change to occur, it would have to be God, because there was nothing in the world that could make that situation happen.
You probably know what Iâ€™m going to say next: The exact situation I was praying for, happened. It blew me away. Iâ€™ve prayed in faith for things like healing and seen God heal. Iâ€™ve prayed in faith for the infilling of the Holy Spirit, and He filled me. Iâ€™ve prayed in faith for general situations like, â€œPlease bless them Lordâ€, and Iâ€™ve seen the Lord bless. But I donâ€™t think Iâ€™ve prayed that specifically for a situation where so many things would have to alter to make it happen. God surprised me and Iâ€™m in awe and also a little embarrassed that I havenâ€™t prayed like that before.
On the heels of this blessing, I started praying specifically for a need I was aware of at my workplace. Within a week we had news of an answer to this need that completely knocked our socks off. I donâ€™t know how else to say it; again, I was in awe and, getting over my embarrassment, bragging about the goodness of God.
Oswald Chambers is one of my most favourite Christian writers and he wrote a devotional many years ago that I just canâ€™t seem to put away. I use this daily, have for years, and each time God speaks to me through my buddy Oswald. He writes about waiting for Godâ€™s little surprises with â€˜breathless expectationâ€™. I have to admit that there are some situations in my life that have been going on so long that I no longer have much in the way of expectation for any changes. As God pours out His â€˜surprisesâ€™ on my life, Iâ€™m aware more than ever of my lack of faith in light of these seemingly unchangeable situations. My common sense is butting heads with my faith and some days itâ€™s a draw.
Iâ€™m learning more about the power of specific prayer but more importantly, the need for me to expect Godâ€™s wonderful surprises every day of my life. He wants to bless me because I am the child He loves, but He also wants me to come to Him and ask with breathless expectation. Common sense should tell me that He can do anything, no matter how uncommon!
Born and raised in southern Ontario, Canada, Lorraine Walker has been interested and involved in Southern Gospel Music since the mid-80â€™s. As part of a ladiesâ€™ trio, she became more familiar with this style of music and the people that made it popular, and began writing occasional articles for a Canadian publication on Southern Gospel.
Known online to her internet friends as â€œCanChikâ€, Lorraine began writing a monthly inspirational article entitled â€œCanChikâ€™s Cornerâ€ for www.johnlanier.com in 2002.Â This column began on www.sgmradio.com in January of 2005, a popular southern gospel music radio and information website which also publishes other features and interviews with her byline.
â€Reality Checkâ€ is a monthly column relating the realities of living every day as child of God. Lorraine welcomes your comments and suggestions, and you can write her at firstname.lastname@example.org