by Elaine Creasman
Lately I’ve been thinking about a four-word prayer a friend said recently at our weekly Bible study.
That prayer is, “Lord, remove all hindrances.”
Those words really touched me. I’ve found myself praying them in my prayer time and adding some words.
“Lord, remove all hindrances in my loved ones’ lives that keep them from drawing near to You.”
“Lord, remove all hindrances that keep them from receiving Your love.”
“Lord, remove all hindrances that keep them from receiving healing.”
“Lord, remove all hindrances that keep them from fully answering Your call on their lives.”
Another way to say that last prayer is: “Lord, remove all hindrances that keep them from being all You have called them to be.”
As I prayed for them, I realized that I could say the same prayers for myself. No, I don’t avoid God like many of my loved ones do, but I do sometimes have trouble drawing near, receiving His love and healing, and fully answering His call on my life.
I thought of looking up the word hindrance. Here’s what I read: a thing that provides resistance, delay, or obstruction to something or someone. Something…that interferes with action or progress.
Synonyms listed included, “impediment, obstacles, barrier, bar, obstruction, block, hurdle, restriction, limitation, encumbrance, interference, complication, delay, drawback, setback, difficulty, snag, stumbling block.”
Today I wondered if the word hindrance was in the Bible. Then hours later I “happened to” run across this verse in a devotional book:
“…let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us” (Hebrews 12:1 NIV)
The first part of verse 2 seems essential to add to this: “fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith…”
The purpose of throwing off hindrances is so I can run with perseverance the race God has marked out for me. There is only one way I can do this—by fixing my eyes on Jesus.
Peter started to sink and was hindered in walking on the water when he took His eyes off of Jesus. How often that happens to me as I’m attempting to accomplish a “walking-on-water” kind of task that the Lord has assigned me.
This evening I asked God a bold question. “Lord, what is it in my life that hinders me from drawing close to You, receiving Your love and healing, and becoming all You have called me to be?
Here are three things that came to mind: fears, doubt, and ruminating about the past. I’m sure He’ll reveal more in the days ahead.
The good news is that as I call out to the Lord, He will help to remove every hindrance from my life. He delights to do that. He wants me to be close to Him and truly enjoy my relationship with Him rather than being bound.
The song that came to mind as I wondered what piece of music could be connected to the word hindrance is “Break Every Chain.” Someone told me about that song not long ago, and it encouraged me to be reminded that our Lord has the power to break every chain—which is another way of saying He has power to remove every hindrance.
What a wonderful God we serve.
How about You? Are you brave enough to pray, “Lord remove all hindrances?”