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Devotion for October 25, 2006

Devotions

A tiny Vietnamese baby named Trang had trouble breathing one night. Her parents took her to the hospital, where she was eventually diagnosed with a hole in her heart. She needed immediate surgery to save her life, but the medical expertise wasn’t available in Vietnam and the family had no money to take her abroad. Christian friends began to spread the word. Within days, thousands of believers around the globe were praying for baby Trang. Financial support poured in, and quickly the family was on its way to Thailand for the life-saving operation. Today, baby Trang is a normal girl, growing, healthy, and happy!

God answers prayer! This is part of His awesome and trustworthy greatness (vv. 1–7). In today’s psalm, this is expressed through imperative verbs, those that give us commands. We and “all the earth” are summoned to praise Him for His wonderful attributes (v. 1). The invitation to “come and see what God has done” is a joy to His people but a warning to the rebellious (v. 5).

God’s faithfulness can be seen in how He kept His promises to His people (vv. 8–12). He opened the Red Sea for Israel to pass through. He saved them and freed them from slavery in Egypt. He led them in the wilderness, testing and refining them spiritually. He allowed defeats and other negative experiences, but in the end He gave victory and brought the people to “a place of abundance” (v. 12).

God’s greatness can also be seen at a personal level, in how He answered the psalmist’s own prayers (vv. 13–20). When in trouble, he called on the Lord; the Lord had responded, and now it was time to joyfully fulfill vows made then. These involved purifying his heart, praising God, and proclaiming to others His love. Why does God answer prayer? Because He loves His children and delights in giving good gifts to them (cf. Matt. 7:7–11).

Apply the Word

Today’s psalm is devoted to thanking God for answered prayer. When’s the last time you spent an entire prayer time thanking God for His answers? Many of us are admirably persistent with our petitions, but seem to think a word or two of gratitude will suffice. Should we aim to be more lavish with our thanks? Our reading of the psalms this month implies yes. So we urge you to get out your prayer list and give additional thanks for the items He’s already answered.

BY Brad Baurain

Dr. Brad Baurain has worked as a writer and editor for Today in the Word since 1993. Currently, he serves as associate professor and TESOL program head at Moody Bible Institute. Brad has the unique privilege of holding a degree from four different universities (including Moody). He has also taught in China, Vietnam, the United States, and Canada. Brad and his wife, Julia, have four children and reside in Munster, Indiana.

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