A Heart for God by Roger Thomas

A Heart for God
Roger Thomas
Mark 7:1-23
February 25, 2007

Introduction: I will never forget Carlos' request. Carlos was a devoted Christian, former elder, a true gentleman in every way. We were in a weekly prayer meeting. In the course of the prayer meeting, I asked if anyone had any special requests. Carlos wasn't the kind of person to share many personal needs. So when he said he had a request, everyone knew it was serious. He explained that his asthma had grown worse over the last few weeks. He wasn't feeling at all well. His normal medication and inhaler hadn't helped. He went to the doctor but his breathing still didn't improve. He and his wife were both getting concerned. He asked us to pray.

I asked Carlos how he wanted us to pray. What specifically did he want us to ask the Lord to do? Carlos said, "Obviously, I want my breathing to improve. But more than that, I would really like to find out why the problem is so much worse this time." So we prayed.

I remember the date. It was the Wednesday morning before Thanksgiving. Carlos left the meeting feeling about the same. No lightning bolts. No instant cure from heaven. In fact, he began to feel a bit worse. That afternoon, his breathing became not only labored but painful. By the next afternoon, Thanksgiving Day, his son insisted that he go to the hospital. He did.

The emergency room ran the normal tests. Within minutes, doctors shuttled him off to the cardiac care center for more tests. On Friday, I visited him. When I walked into his room, Carlos and Irene were all smiles. "The Lord answered our prayers," they said. Carlos explained. The tests showed he had an unknown heart problem. In fact, the doctors said his heart problem was the cause of the breathing difficulties not his asthma. The doctors thought medication should take care of it. He wouldn't need surgery.

I tell you that story for two reasons. I want you to know that the Lord answers prayer. In ...

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