If you’ve ever been to Camp Williams, you know that we have a few gophers who have made their home there. They dig up the land, destroy our grass, and leave piles of dirt scattered across our fields. In addition to that, they also create gopher holes. It can be annoying to trip on a gopher hole when playing with your boys or just walking along the field. While the boys have fun kicking down the dirt mounds next to the hole, most of us view gophers and their digging as a menace.
One of my favorite things to do during Powwow is to walk by my boys’ tents at night and pray over them before they go to sleep. One night, as I was making my rounds, Jay was upset and crying. He had been playing in the field and lost his dad’s pocketknife. They looked around the field but couldn’t find it. He had gotten his cut and chop card a month prior and this was the first time his dad had let him borrow the knife for camp. Jay and I prayed that God would give him peace and we would find the knife since it was so important.
The next morning, Jay runs up to me with the biggest smile. One of my other boys had been walking along the field that morning and had seen a gopher hole. Wondering what was inside, he shoved his hand into the hole and pulled out Jay’s knife. While happy to find the knife, my other boy was a little disappointed to not have pulled out a gopher. It did my heart good to hear Jay tell me that our prayer worked! God cared about Jay and wanted him to know that prayer works.
There are a few lessons we can pull from this story. The obvious lesson is Jay’s. Are we trusting God to provide for us and help us when we call out to Him? Maybe you have something that you’ve lost recently. It can be something like losing someone’s trust, having a child or boy choose the world instead of God’s plan, or maybe you’ve even lost your own desire to seek after God and get into His Word. Whatever it is, the Bible says “The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results.” (James 5:16b) Find a brother who can pray with you that God begins to work on your behalf.
The other lesson is found in my second boy. Out of the hundreds of gopher holes, he stopped at that one and felt the urging of the Spirit to “see what is in there.” How many times have we had the Spirit urge us to try something different, reach out in faith and put our hand in a “gopher hole” where we have no idea what will happen? In James Ch.2, he writes about the importance of our faith, but also how our faith is useless without works.
So you see, faith by itself isn’t enough. Unless it produces good deeds, it is dead and useless.
What is God speaking to you lately? Maybe He is telling you to approach a potential leader to teach a class, or He’s impressing on you to speak with your pastor about moving Rangers to a different night. Perhaps it’s even something more challenging, maybe God has been telling you to share what He has done in your life with your coworker and to invite them to church? Don’t allow the unknown to damper your adventurous spirit. Reach into your gopher hole. Who knows, maybe you’ll pull out a treasure. And there’s no greater treasure than seeing a lost soul come to know Jesus because we were willing to listen and obey.
To quote James once more “Show me your faith through your good deeds!”
Your brother in Christ,