THE HOLY SPIRIT KNOWS!
(Subtitled: Allowing the Holy Spirit to find lost items for you)
By: Norm & Kathleen Rasmussen
Not long ago my wife, Kathleen, and I was sharing with a group of prisoners in the state prison how the Holy Spirit has helped us find lost items over the years, and how faith-building it is in our prayer lives.
Sometimes I think God allows us to purposely lose personal items just so we can watch God help us find them, and the biggest reason for this is that it reinforces our faith in answered prayer. It also reinforces our belief that God is interested in every detail – seemingly insignificant details - of our lives, which includes lost items.
Let me establish the fact that we don’t try to “use” God to help us find lost items without first doing everything we know to do to try to find what is lost. After looking everywhere we can think of where the misplaced item might be … we then have learned to go to our heavenly Father and ask and trust that He’ll commission the Holy Spirit to help us find the lost or misplaced item. We’re quite sure God wouldn’t answer our prayer otherwise. God doesn’t like to be “used” frivolously, we don’t believe.
Having established the above … I feel it’s past time for us to start recording these little “praise reports” to publicly give thanks to God for answering our prayers in this fashion, and to maybe be a means to encourage others to do what we have learned God seems to delight in doing -- helping build faith in our prayer and trust lives by finding lost items for us.
Here’s the latest “lost item found” praise report:
Kathleen misplaced or lost her set of car keys around March 20, 2006. We looked everyplace we could think of, to no avail. We had a few important duplicate keys made, but when I found out how much it would cost to have one of those automatic car door clickers replaced ($19 minimum), I decided to wait awhile and give the Holy Spirit plenty of time to retrieve the car keys.
This may seem very elementary to some, but just in case, let’s think through something here. The Holy Spirit knows what has happened to every lost item we lose or misplace, correct? All we have to do is get Him to show us where the lost item is, or, bring the lost item back to us somehow, if needed.
According to the balanced Word of God, (the Bible), how do we get God to help us period? We must pray, correct? We must ask in Jesus name, then trust or believe, that He will do the very thing we are asking Him to do for us. (See: Mark 11:24. A side-note to this scripture reference: I believe we need to be very wise in what we are believing God for. I don't believe God is obligated to give us everything we "believe" Him for, especially if it is intertwined with selfishness and/or our limited "human logic - human reasoning" (See: Proverbs 3:5-6), thus this scripture reference in Mark 11:24 is not a formula for getting out of God everything we ask Him for. However ... it is a vitally important spiritual principle, and James 1:5-6 substantiates it).
However … there is a condition on the above that we must also never overlook. God is not so quick to answer our prayers if they involve selfishness on our part. God does not like reinforcing our lust. Most prayers never get answered the way we would like them answered for three reasons:
1) They are selfish requests.
2) We are not praying according to the guidelines God has given us in His word. (Here's a valuable writing that addresses this more fully: http://www.precious-testimonies.com/Exhortations/p-t/PrayerInsights.htm )
2) We aren’t patient enough with God in the request being answered, and our impatience cancels them out.
When you lose your set of keys, it involves an additional expense in replacing them. Why spend money you don’t need to spend having new keys made up if the keys are someplace where they can be found? We don’t see this as a selfish request, so we were able to pray and trust with confidence that God didn’t object to our prayer request.
However, by May 29, we both pretty much had resigned ourselves into assuming the keys had somehow been lost on the ground and someone had found them by now but didn’t know how to get them back to their rightful owner. Thus – it was a matter of God doing pretty much a miracle if He wanted to return our car keys.
On May 30, 2006, Kathleen shared this with me shortly after waking up from her night’s sleep:
“I think I had a dream that I found my car keys, but I’m not totally sure. I must have had the dream during the middle of the night, which is why I can’t remember for certain. I don’t remember any of the details of the dream though, but I just have this feeling that I’m going to find my car keys.”
You have to know that Kathleen does not remember most of her dreams. When she remembers one, trust me, I listen very closely to it, because I figure God might be speaking to her or us, and I don’t want to miss what God wants to communicate to us, ever.
We got preoccupied and I forgot about what she said about her possible dream. We ended up going to the local YMCA mid-afternoon for exercise. Kathleen was finished exercising and was waiting for me to get out of the locker room. Rather than wait in the lounge, she shared that she wished she had her own set of car keys (I had the only set) so she could go to the car and wait for me there.
In thinking that, the thought came to her that maybe she should examine her gym bag one more time. Maybe I put my car keys in it and somehow overlooked them, she thought to herself.
She had looked through the gym bag before looking for her keys. However, evidently she had forgotten to search an outside pocket. Guess what? There were her car keys, in an outside pocket!
She played cool about it, however. When I got out of the locker room – as we started leaving the complex – she coolly asked: “Guess what I just found?”
At first it didn’t click, but then I knew what she was going to tell me. She found her car keys! The little smile on her face made my day after she shared it. We both thanked the Lord a number of times for allowing us to find them, BUT … that just didn’t seem sufficient enough for me. I felt to write it out so maybe it would help someone else be encouraged to stay patient in waiting on God to answer their prayer.
Salvation for unsaved loved ones comes to mind first and foremost. Lack of finances, and health issues closely follow. Seeing one’s ministry call come together is also right up there.
Patience is the one thing I’m slowly beginning to realize is what is missing from my own personal prayer life, though God is changing that. Also - understanding the guidelines and adhering to them in The Prayer Of Faith has also paid huge dividends! God could have showed us where those car keys were the day we prayed. That is what I would have preferred. He’s done such things in the past for us. Yet he delayed answering the prayer for over two months. WHY? To teach us that we must NEVER be so foolish as to put our OWN time frame on when and how God answers our prayer(s).
The devil would like us to … of course. He does not want us gaining confidence in our prayer lives.
When you have
misplaced an item, and you have searched high and low for it, rather than just
chock it off as a bad experience … may we suggest to your asking and trusting God to
lead you to it? God delights in glorifying Himself, please know … and – you
never know how much He may want to strengthen your prayer life as well!
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