Burt Smith
Burt Smith

I would love to be able to revisit missed moments—in my sermonizing and, especially, when praying. I used to pray for myself, those I cherished and the church I served. Then I’d pray for precious people desperately seeking a miracle from heaven.

Thinking back, I realize often my sermons and public prayers were risk-averse. Because my personal prayers for the supernatural often did not “come true,” I began to doubt they could for others as well. If we are going to reach the world with the life-changing power of the gospel, we must be people who take risks, who ask and expect in big ways. We are not trying to get people to say a prayer, but discover a real, personal and powerful God with Holy Spirit power (1 Cor. 2:4). God wants us to step out and believe Him.

O, God, that we might not just pray for salvation and deliverance, but that we would bring the full gospel in word as well as deed to those we reach.

Prayer + Reflection

  • Ask God to do whatever it takes to put you into situations that require more faith than you think you have.
  • Ask God to remind you of His power and presence when faced with seemingly impossible situations.
  • When fear seems to prevail, praise God for what He said He would do, not for what you see, or think you see.

is the pastor emeritus of Living Water (Olympia Foursquare Church) in Olympia, Wash., and a member of the board of directors of The Foursquare Church and of the Endowment Committee.