15th January

Prayer Changes Things

She answered ‘We will starve to death …’ The widow went and did as Elijah told her, and all of them had enough food for many days. 1 Kings 17: 12, 15

Christians believe that prayer can change anything. But experience shows that God is not in the business of the ‘quick fix’. Frequently we go away disappointed after our initial requests. The following story reminds us that prayer, like life itself, is a process. If at first we do not get through, re-evaluate and pray from a different perspective. We will find that the good God, who is full of surprises, will not fail us.

Mungo, from his base at Clathures, became a firm friend of Rhydderch, the Christian King of Strathclyde, whose headquarters was fifteen miles down river at Dunbarton. But Morcant, the local ruler and patron of the Druid altar at Craigmaddie Moor was a bitter enemy of them both. His mercenaries looted the local crops which they stored in Morcant’s barn. That winter real hunger struck Mungo’s people. He walked to Craigmaddie Moor and confronted Morcant, saying the people needed food. ‘You Christians teach that God will provide for those who serve him. Well, I don’t serve him and I have plenty; you serve him and have nothing, so your teaching must be false,’ Morcant mockingly told him.

Mungo returned to Clathures empty handed, but he was not defeated. He gathered the people to pray. Their prayers were answered in this way. After they prayed the rain came down in deluge after deluge. The rivers flooded their banks, and Morcant’s barn took off towards the river Clyde like an ark on a wild cruise. On the banks of the Molindar it went hard aground beside Mungo’s church!

Next morning Mungo gathered his flock to thank God and eat a good breakfast. Morcant did not find it at all funny!

Some have meat and cannot eat;
Some cannot eat that want it:
But we have meat and we can eat
Sae let the Lord be thankit!
Robert Burns