The Blessing of Prayer
I have always loved the above picture. I wish I had it hanging in my home. I need to be reminded of what prayer is and to be more compelled and consistent. Yesterday, Earl preached on “The Sinner’s Prayer” and last week, my mom gave me a copy of “The Praying Life”, and today I found myself in a conversation with my 3 youngest about prayer. I think God is about to do a work here in me. Yay!
This is what the conversation sounded like this morning between me and Jonathan, Annie and Molly. We were reminding ourselves about a visit we had over the weekend with some new friends. I pointed out how they had prayed for us and for the kids especially.
“Do you know WHY they prayed for you?”
“John 1:3 says that ‘all things came into being through Him’. So, they prayed for you because God put it in their heart to pray for you. Why do you think God would lead them to pray for you to have good, close friends who would encourage you in your faith and that you would be a light to the next ten generations as you tell others about Jesus?”
“I don’t know.”
“Think about this. Annie, if I told you to ask me for a new bike for your birthday, what would you think?”
“I’d think that you were going to get me one.”
“Exactly! And you’d think that, because you know I love you and that it would be mean of me to TELL you to ask me for something that I didn’t intend to give you.”
“So . . . why do you think God led a perfect stranger to pray those things for you?”
“Because He is going to give us those things?”
“That’s what I believe. Imagine that! God put it in the heart of someone that you’ve never met to pray those things for you because He intends to bring those about in your life. Only a God who loves you – a good God – would allow you to see Him work in such a way. What an amazing thing! How much He loves you!”
As the above scenario was actually playing itself out Saturday afternoon, I was overwhelmed by God’s love for me and our family. The desires of my heart for His ministry through us and for what I wanted to see Him do in the lives of our children just burst forth in anticipation and hope. Not demands. Not unrealistic expectations. But hopes. Desires. And all held with an open hand before a God who has put these desires in my heart and who reminds me daily that He delights to do exceedingly abundantly beyond all that I could ever ask or think. He WILL exalt His name. He WILL display His glory. He WILL do it in His timing and in His way and by His methods. I just need to stay as close by as I can, with the biggest bucket I can hold, asking for Him to grant me the desires of my heart and ready to have Him fill it with all of His goodness!
This pilgrimage is an amazing privilege . . .yet the hardest road I will ever walk.
Prayer is what keeps me sane and on the right road!