Paul went through many trials, his difficulties far exceeding what contemporary believers encounter. It is quite possible that Paul felt alone in his cell, depressed, abandoned, rejected, hurt and destroyed.

Paul could have been demolished, if only because his disciples left him when he needed them most.
This alone can destroy anyone. (We must keep in mind that Paul was a man, although he was the great, legendary apostle)

Rather than allowing himself to be overwhelmed by his difficulties, Paul made the decision to remember. Remember that the Greek root for “remembrance” is the same as grave, tomb, sepulchre. We now come to the link between this “morbid” vocabulary and prayer.

Paul had to put his problems aside to unleash the power of prayer. You’ve noticed that when you’re at your lowest, it’s hard to think positively or remember the good things that happened to you. The flesh loves to feel sorry for itself. Paul could very well have felt sorry for himself!

He preferred to remember all the good things God had done for him. He must dig deep beyond his current difficulties to remember the positive and fruitful relationships that have marked his life. He has to make a real effort, because his life has become so difficult. He must dig up these memories, find them and bring them to the surface.

When trial comes and Satan tries to discourage you, it is time to dig deep. Stop all activity, talk to yourself and make the decision to remember the goodness of God. It may take time or the help of other soldiers in the combat zone, but I assure you that you will not remember anything by chance. You must decide to dig up those good memories by getting rid of the accumulated dirt. Great strength will fill you as you remember all the goodness of God!

  • Comforted by old memories

As Paul looks back on his past years, digging through the rubble and worries, he comes to his first memories of Timothy! Suddenly his heart softens and he begins to thank God! “Ah, here is one whose loyalty is unfailing!” Gratitude flows freely from his heart to God. Now he can enter into prayer.

When everyone abandons us, because of pressure for which we are not responsible and no one seems reliable anymore, stop and think.

Look beyond your emotions and remember all the people God has put in your path. Name them one by one, see their evolution and how precious their friendship is to you. Great satisfaction and great gratitude will invade your heart! You have to remember the good things!

When your heart is grateful, it becomes easy to pray. Our complicated and overloaded daily life makes prayer difficult. Start giving thanks and praying will be easy.
You are probably saying to yourself: “Very well, this explains the link between prayer and these terms of burial. But what about the other terms of this Greek root: “statue, memorial and monument”, what is their relationship to prayer?

By using the term “remember”, Paul means: “Timothy, my intention is to pray, pray, pray and pray for you until I have saturated the throne room of God with your name! Wherever God looks down, I want Him to see a living memorial of you! I don’t want God to be able to forget you, so I fill the sky and my prayers for you stand like statues, monuments and memorials that rise up in his favor! My prayers for you will stand before God as an eternal monument!”

In fact, the same Greek word is correctly translated in Acts 10:4, when the Word says: “…thy prayers and thy alms have gone up before God, and he has remembered them.” (American translation: They stand as a memorial before God.) Prayers therefore form a living memorial before God!

Isn’t it comforting to know that someone is so dedicated to praying for you? Imagine the assurance you get from the prayers of a faithful friend who fills God’s throne room with his prayers for you.

Many lives have been saved thanks to the prayers of a mother or grandmother. Long after they passed away and arrived in heaven, their prayers continued to exert their influence in people’s lives. For what ? Because the power of prayer is permanent and lasts forever.

A prayer, made in faith, is never forgotten by God. It remains fresh in His mind, as would an eternal memorial, like a huge building or a marble statue!

This text is an extract from the book “Living in the Combat Zone” written by Rick Renner.

We invite you to read the following article “Tips to survive in the combat zone“.

Dig Deep

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