When we are afflicted, suffering, or in trouble, God tells us what we should do: come before His presence and pray. Why? For one thing, it may just be that God will remove that problem because of our prayers. That is not to say that God will always take away our afflictions, suffering, or troubles; but sometimes He does.
By simply bringing our circumstances before the Lord and acknowledging our need and dependence upon Him, we can see God intervene in the situations that most trouble us. Prayer can also give us the grace we need to endure trouble and be brought much closer to God.
James 5:13 tells us, “Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray.” The word suffering used here could also be translated “in trouble” or “in distress.” Is anyone among you in trouble? Are you distressed? Then you should pray.
So when the bottom drops out, when you feel you are hanging by just a thread, when circumstances have become incredibly difficult, or when they have grown worse by the minute, what should you do? You should pray. Come into the Lord’s presence, humbly and thankfully, and pray. Pray when you are afflicted. Pray when you are sick. Pray when some sin has overtaken you. Pray when specific needs occur.
Pray, and don’t give up.
The story of Johnny Cash’s life and spiritual struggles offers hope to anyone who has had trouble staying on the straight and narrow path—and reminds us that God redeems broken lives and makes them whole again. My new book, Johnny Cash: The Redemption of an American Icon is a fascinating look at a unique and talented musician and follower of Christ!