“Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another so that you may be healed. The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much. Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the earth for three years and six months.” (16-17)
Too often I pray for myself and limp along in my struggle. I forget I can bring my burdens to be prayed for by a righteous friend, and be healed.
It is a beautiful reminder to consider: the giants of the faith, like Elijah, had all the same advantages we do. They didn’t have any super power besides the Holy Spirit, Who also dwells in us.
It can be hard to find a friend that’s trustworthy, someone who won’t spread your pain around like juicy gossip, someone who won’t be intimidated by your tendency for evil. I want to commit to being a friend who is safe.
This verse isn’t saying, “make your business everyone’s business”. Let’s not make our sin more or less than it is. We are a royal priesthood, we should be able to confess to one another without fear, shame, etc. Let’s be trustworthy priests, good friends, unintimidated, honest, humble and dependent on God, looking always to Christ.
Our accuser wants to leave us injured and shackled in shame. We’ve been called out of darkness and into marvelous light, and it’s not just for the individual. We are members of one another. We suffer and rejoice together.
“The prayer offered in faith will restore the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up, and if he has committed sins, they will be forgiven him.” (15)
Lord, heal us! Thank you for Your glorious forgiveness. Thank you for making us Your people. Teach us to love like you love, and forgive as you forgive.
Speaking of “giants”, tomorrow we start Chronicles!