by Ami Hendrickson
This is the boldness which we have toward him, that, if we ask anything according to his will, he listens to us.
1 John 5:14
On this date in 1865 the American Civil War officially ended.
For four years the war had raged, pitting brother against brother on opposite sides of the conflict. The conflict claimed approximately 750,000 lives.
War was never part of God’s original plan. God is a God of love. Of peace. Of goodwill to all humanity. But God can use even the most horrific circumstances to reach out to His children.
During the course of the American Civil War, several revivals swept the country. On occasion, preaching, hymn singing, and prayer would continue non-stop for a full day or more, with meetings full to overflowing. Some estimate that nearly 350,000 soldiers were converted.
As the War ravaged the country, destroying property and fragmenting families, supporters of both sides prayed to the same God. They asked for their loved ones’ safety and pled for God to bless their cause.
Did God hear their prayers? Of course, He did. Even when the outcome was different than they hoped.
While it’s certainly true that prayer can change the course of history, it can do something even more amazing: it can change hearts and lives for eternity. Someday every war on Earth will be over.
But we have this promise – that as Children of God, we will have the privilege of boldly living with Him forever.
May the words I speak, the thoughts I think, and the prayers I utter please You now and forever.
In Jesus’ Name, I pray, Amen