The Difficult Kind
“‘Only prayer can drive this kind out,’ answered Jesus; ‘nothing else can.’" (Mark 9:29 GNT)
The disciples had healed people and cast out demons when Jesus sent them out two by two. Why did they now seem powerless before the boy with the evil spirit in the valley of the Mount of Transfiguration? That is what they themselves asked Jesus after he had healed the child; and Jesus replied that “this kind” comes out only by prayer. There are several lessons to be learned here.
First of all, there are different “kinds” of trials and difficulties. We may have faith enough to believe for some and not for others, because there are situations that may seem to be a huge mountain that will never move. For those “kinds” (which, by the way, are different for each person), Jesus said that the solution is prayer. Some Bible versions add “and fasting.”
Does this mean that we do a sort of penance before God, denying ourselves food and locking ourselves away to earn God’s intervention? No! What Jesus was saying was that if we are lacking the faith to believe for a particular problem, we need to spend time in the presence of Almighty God in order to increase our faith to believe!
Remember that the boy’s father had said, “Lord, I believe; help my unbelief!” Aren’t we this way sometimes? We have faith to believe for others, and even for certain things in our lives; but if we were to be honest as the father of the boy was honest, we would have to admit that we don’t have the faith to overcome those besetting sins or the weight that we sometimes carry because we find it hard to entrust our difficult situations to the Lord.
Let’s spend time in the Lord’s presence today, and let’s not leave until we know that faith in God and in the power of his might has arisen in our souls!
Read Mark 9:14-29.