John the Baptist is in prison where he begins to question his confidence in Jesus. The cities in which Christ ministers do not respond. The doubts of a saint, however, are massively different from the doubts of a skeptic.
5 When he had entered Capernaum, a centurion came forward to him, appealing to him, 6 “Lord, my servant is lying paralyzed at home, suffering terribly.” 7 And he said to him, “I will come and heal him.” 8 But the centurion replied, “Lord, I am not worthy to have you come under my roof, but only say the word, and my servant will be healed. 9 For I too am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. And I say to one, ‘Go,’ and he goes, and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes, and to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.” 10 When Jesus heard this, he marveled and said to those who followed him, “Truly, I tell you, with no one in Israel have I found such faith.
I often pray “in Jesus’ name,” but I am not sure I recognize his authority or my own unworthiness to ever have you answer my prayers. Neither is my heart sufficiently moved by the needs of others. Give me the faith of this centurion.
Let it start by being willing to ask. So often I simply fail to pray when I know full well that I am in need of answers from you.
Further, I sometimes retain a hint of my own self-righteousness. I expect you to do things for me because of who I am or what I have done, or the justness of my cause. In reality I deserve nothing. All that I have or ever will have from you is purely of grace. I am not worthy to have you come under my roof.
I also see that this centurion was praying for his servant. He was clearly not an arrogant man in his dealings with others. Considering his rank and position I wonder if it might have been completely acceptable for him to to care very little about this servant’s well-being. His concern was personal as he transformed his servant’s need into his own. Move me to that kind of intercession.
Finally, there is the matter of Christ’s authority. I am not certain that I see him as Lord of the universe and Lord of my life as I pray in his name. Maybe I know these things as facts, but there are too many times when I treat Christ as more of my servant than my Master. Help me to make this a thing of the past and never treat Christ as anything but the King of kings that he is.
Again, give me the faith of this centurion as I lift up my requests to you.
In Christ my Lord,