Metroid Prime Remastered: Prayers Answered “Out of Order”

To be honest with you, I was starting to give up hope. No, that isn’t actually accurate… I had actually COMPLETELY given up on the idea that Nintendo would ever remaster with my beloved Metroid Prime trilogy and bring it to the Nintendo Switch. Over the years of watching other older games in their gaming catalog receive a second chance to reach a larger audience, it seemed like Nintendo was deliberately choosing not to even give us hope that this day would ever come. When Nintendo finally announced that they were working on Metroid Prime 4, I felt a small stirring of hope… mostly because that implied that they remembered that there was a Metroid Prime 1, 2, and 3 in existence. But when Nintendo finally announced a new Metroid adventure for their newest console, it was a 2D return to the series original roots in Metroid Dread… a good game to be sure, but NOT the Metroid Prime adventure I was looking for. But then, without any warning at all, Nintendo decided to just toss a completely unexpected and fully completed Metroid Prime Remastered Trilogy onto the Switch without any pomp or circumstance… no pre-order announcement, no trailers to build hype, just “BOOM here it is, you can download it and start playing it today”. Well played, Nintendo… well played. Go ahead, take my money… you earned it.

If you missed these titles in their original incarnation on the GameCube, you may not understand what all the fuss is about. To say that the original Metroid Prime was one of the most visually incredible and immersive titles of its’ generation is an under-statement… to this day, I still remember having my mind completely blown the first time I saw beads of moisture slowly dripping down my visor as I took my first steps onto an unexplored planet. Sure, I had played several first-person games before… but NOTHING I had previously experienced captured the feeling of being IN the suit the way Metroid Prime did. The Prime series was ahead of its’ time in more ways than one, perfectly capturing an exploratory but cautionary tone with an ambience that didn’t just set the mood… it WAS the mood. You never knew what the next chamber might hold… exciting new information, a powerful upgrade, or an incredibly dangerous enemy that would push Samus to her limits. After YEARS of begging and pleading, it is FINALLY here for new and old fans alike to enjoy… and it gives hope that the long-gestating Metroid Prime 4 might not be too far away either. If you had asked me a week before this announcement happened what the likelihood of seeing a Metroid Prime remaster was, I would have probably told you not to hold your breath, because I had long since given up believing this day would ever come. And yet, here we are.

This remastered Metroid Prime Trilogy and the eagerly anticipated Metroid Prime 4 exist in an interesting continuum… without the first three games, there couldn’t be a fourth one. BUT… the incredible amount of fan interest in a fourth Metroid Prime title is what gave Nintendo a reason to finally remaster the first three titles in the series so those who never played them could get the full experience. This remastered title was essentially co-dependent on the sequel, and vice-versa. There is a generation of fans who never played these games and are simply looking forward to a new entry in the series, and there are old-timers like me that never forgot them… and both of us are going to find the answers to what we are looking for in coordination with the answer that the OTHER is seeking. This is no mere coincidence… it is actually a reality that occurs far more often in our real-world prayers than we may realize. The answers to our requests are not being delayed because the Lord doesn’t hear them or delights in making us wait… it is often because the answer to our prayer is designed in coordination with another person’s journey that we may be completely unaware of. Many times, the Lord chooses to respond to our needs through an intentional intersection of two seemingly unrelated paths, bringing us into a deeper understanding of how the “body of Christ” is actually intended to work… in perfect harmony. Let’s take a look at a time that two different, desperate needs converged into ONE miraculous unified moment of divine grace…

Mark 5:21-24 Now when Jesus had crossed over again by boat to the other side, a great multitude gathered to Him; and He was by the sea. And behold, one of the rulers of the synagogue came, Jairus by name. And when he saw Him, he fell at His feet and begged Him earnestly, saying, “My little daughter lies at the point of death. Come and lay Your hands on her, that she may be healed, and she will live.” So Jesus went with him, and a great multitude followed Him and thronged Him.

So far this seems fairly “paint by numbers”… Jesus lands somewhere, the people immediately swarm Him, and He is asked to perform a miracle to heal someone. Just another day in Jesus’s life… but His path to heal this young child was going to bring Him on a collision course with an entirely different need that was TWELVE years in the making.

Mark 5:25-29 Now a certain woman had a flow of blood for twelve years and had suffered many things from many physicians. She had spent all that she had and was no better, but rather grew worse. When she heard about Jesus, she came behind Him in the crowd and touched His garment. For she said, “If only I may touch His clothes, I shall be made well.” Immediately the fountain of her blood was dried up, and she felt in her body that she was healed of the affliction. 

Now before we move forward, keep this in mind… this was NOT the walking route Jesus was originally going to take. He was met by a synagogue leader named Jairus and redirected towards this man’s home to heal his daughter. And on this detour, Jesus would be brought into the proximity of another person in desperate need… a woman who had suffered for twelve long years, trying every possible medical solution without relief. She pressed through the crowd and found a way to reach Jesus… an option that would not have been present if Jesus had not been brought in this particular direction by an ENTIRELY different person’s prayer. Now are you ready for the kicker of this story? What if I told you that the healing that occurred for BOTH of these individuals was not the only “coincidence” that happened in this story? What if this story that would result in BOTH of their miracles began many years earlier and they didn’t even know it at the time? Twelve years, to be exact?

Mark 5:35-42 While He was still speaking, some came from the ruler of the synagogue’s house who said, “Your daughter is dead. Why trouble the Teacher any further?” As soon as Jesus heard the word that was spoken, He said to the ruler of the synagogue, “Do not be afraid; only believe.” And He permitted no one to follow Him except Peter, James, and John the brother of James. Then He came to the house of the ruler of the synagogue, and saw a tumult and those who wept and wailed loudly. When He came in, He said to them, “Why make this commotion and weep? The child is not dead, but sleeping.” And they ridiculed Him. But when He had put them all outside, He took the father and the mother of the child, and those who were with Him, and entered where the child was lying. Then He took the child by the hand, and said to her, “Talitha, cumi,” which is translated, “Little girl, I say to you, arise.” Immediately the girl arose and walked, for she was twelve years of age. And they were overcome with great amazement.

Please tell me you caught that… Jairus’s daughter, the young child whose sickness brought Jesus down this road was TWELVE years old. Twelve years earlier, a baby took her first breath without any awareness that somewhere nearby a nightmare had just begun for the woman with the issue of blood. For twelve years, this child grew in blissful ignorance that her life was going to be the answer to someone else’s last chance for healing. For twelve years, a woman spent every dollar she had in search of a non-existent cure, not realizing that there were forces beyond her awareness that were going to bring her into the gravitational pull of another desperate cry for help… and that these two needs would bring the Lord in their midst in a way neither of them could have possibly imagined.

One of the most difficult realities to struggle with as a follower of Christ is that our prayers are not always answered in the time or manner that we wish… unlike that infamous sentence we hear anytime we are placed on hold on a telephone, our calls aren’t even typically answered in the order that they were received. But there is a reason for this… like the symbiotic circle that is delivering both a Metroid Prime remastered trilogy AND setting the stage for the eventual release of Metroid Prime 4, our prayers to the Lord impact our fellow members in the body of Christ in ways that are not always obvious on the surface. He is not delaying our deliverance because He is disinterested or uncaring… it is because there is a timing associated with it that will impact people beyond our current comprehension (2 Peter 3:9). The illness of Jarius’s twelve-year-old daughter brought Jesus into a powerful point of intersection with the woman with an incurable twelve-year disease… that is NOT a coincidence, that is PROVIDENCE.

The Lord did not inflict these illnesses or pain on His children… He only gives good gifts (Matthew 7:11). But we absolutely have an enemy who will design and inflict obstacles, challenges, and heartbreaking events for the purposes of pushing us away from the only One who can help us (John 10:10). And while the Lord’s deliverance will look different for each of us, there is a larger purpose at play that causes prayers to be answered in the order and the manner that they NEED to be answered. When the evil Pharoah enslaved the people of Israel and enacted a horrific law to murder their children, the Lord didn’t immediately overthrow him. Instead, He sent one little baby down the river into the loving arms of this wicked leader’s daughter… allowing the deliverer Moses to be raised within the very heart of the evil kingdom he would one day defy (Exodus 2). When a pending global famine would threaten the lives of Jacob and his entire family, the Lord used the cruel machinations of Joseph’s brothers to place young Joseph on a collision course with his destiny (Genesis 37)… a destiny that would place Joseph in a position to save them all many years later (Genesis 50). What our enemy intends for evil, the Lord will often turn to good (Genesis 50:20)… just not in the timeframe or method we would prefer.

The original Metroid Prime trilogy is what makes Metroid Prime 4 possible, and if it wasn’t for Metroid Prime 4, I am not sure Nintendo would have ever gotten around to giving us this remastered collection of the original trilogy. The answers to both of these requests were built on each other, because our gaming fandom is designed to bring us together even when we may appreciate different things in our gaming experiences. Perhaps you are most interested in what is coming up next in Metroid, while I would like to see the original titles upgraded and made available to the current generation of fans… and now that the time is right, our unique needs have converged and resulted in a reality where BOTH can exist and make the other possible. And in our prayers to the Lord, the same concept is demonstrated in Scripture over and over again… His answers to our prayers do not exist in a vacuum. What He does in our lives impacts others, and as the Architect of this body of believers He knows the perfect time for those solutions to be revealed.

Let’s not lose hope in the darkness we may be desperately groping through right now in search of solutions that we cannot find… just as the surprise announcement of Metroid blasted onto our Switch consoles without warning, our Father’s answers to our prayers are often YEARS in development far beyond our awareness. But they WILL arrive in the EXACT time that they are needed… and will typically be an answer to more of His children’s prayers than merely our own as a reminder that we are all part of ONE body. Our pain does not exist in a vacuum… our suffering in the body of Christ impacts and affects each other as a reminder that that we are all connected (1 Corinthians 12:12-27). But the other side of that coin is ALSO true… His answers to our prayers are also designed to bring us together and unify us in His combined grace. It may be that our suffering is what will actually bring Jesus into contact with someone else who is desperately seeking Him, bringing them into proximity to “touch the hem of His garment” in a way that could never have happened any other way… and the miracle He is bringing us is a gift meant for TWO.

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