Pulling from the Prayer Pot

The greatest infusion of passion to pray for others has come through a simple plastic blue pot (which has been traded in for an adorable winter mug). I recently wrote here about my Prayer Pot; the nutshell is I put a bunch of names in a little pot and everyday (well…most days) I draw a name and pray for that person that day. Sometimes I take a picture of the name and send it to the person for which I’m praying.

It never occurred to me I’d hear anything back ~ I just wanted friends to know they were being prayed for that day. A few texted me back with specific prayer requests, but most surprising (though I don’t know why this would surprise me), some friends let me know that the timing of receiving a text that they were being prayed for was amazing. For every one of those responses, I absolutely had no idea of the situation they were in, or a need for prayer. It is evident that God did; there are just too many stories to call this coincidence.

Today really touched me and I had to share…

I have a friend from 5th Grade (that’s 39 years ago!!), and we’ve been able to maintain a level of interest and care for each other through Facebook. When her son, Garrett, entered basic training, my youngest daughter put his name in her prayer box, because she has been praying for soldiers since she was 10 years old. (You can read about that here.) In December I found myself writing Garrett’s name and dropping it on my pot as well. This morning I pulled his name and prayed for him ~ having no idea of his whereabouts or position. This afternoon I let my friend know I had pulled his name and was praying for him. This is her response:  My eyes just filled with tears Sheri! Garrett just left this morning on a ship for several weeks of pre-deployment training! Thank you so much for your faithful prayers! To God be the glory! Hugs to you and your precious family!

There is no way I knew that. I simply had no idea.

The Prayer Pot was “shared” a lot via Facebook the day I posted it and I saw several comments from moms inspired to start their own Prayer Pot with their kids. Each time I write my hope is that whatever I share is worth your time to read, so it was very encouraging to see others wanting to bring this idea to their own families. What if kids began to see how real, active and interested God is as they prayed for others? I know how encouraged I am in my faith by this prayer journey, so when I consider that praying for others could grow a child’s faith…well, that’s pretty exciting!

I hope there are some new Prayer Pots out there and I hope through that there are others seeing how God uses His people to take care of His people through prayer. I also hope we each realize that as we draw closer to each other through these prayers, we also grow closer to God ~ which I believe is part of the purpose of prayer.

A Moment of Silence and Prayer

In the very early hours I am awake ~ she’s on my mind and in my prayers again…still.

One year ago today a mom in Wisconsin waited to hear that her son, a Purdue student, was alright. There was a horrific stabbing in the engineering building and like me, she waited to hear her son was OK. I received the text from my daughter that she was OK, but the Wisconsin mom waited 5 hours only to hear her son was not. He had been the target. He had been killed.

I pictured the Wisconsin mom (her name is Mary) on the floor in utter and complete despair – there are not words to describe what she must have gone through in that moment, and the next, and the next. My heart has hurt for her all year, my prayers for her have been unceasing. I wrote a letter to her that week – unable to send it, it sat tucked in a notebook for eight months, though she never left my prayers.

In October, almost nine months later, I felt I could not ignore the promptings to reach out to her, so I re-wrote that letter, sat on it for more days and finally sent it. A month later I discovered a letter in my mailbox from her ~ tears welled in my eyes as I saw the return address ~ I never expected to hear back from her.

She wrote that she understood my hesitancy to reach out but was grateful that I did. She went on to tell me that she and her family were touched by the many residents of Indiana that have reached out to her family in kindness and sympathy, that as a group we continue to reach out to them even months after the horrible tragedy they have, and are still, suffering. (Good job residents of Indiana.)

I’m writing this post this morning with a heart to gather us as moms and dads from Indiana and beyond to pray for this mom and this dad, Mary and Jim. Let’s lift them and their sons, Erich and Nate, to the Lord. They’ve had a year we cannot begin to imagine – and today is a day they do not want to remember, yet it has come regardless.

Purdue will be holding a moment of silence at noon today as the Bell Tower rings 12 times. Let’s offer our own moments of silence in our own ways today in honor of Andrew and in prayer for his family. (Click here for the January 21 Exponent -Purdue’s paper.)

(I wrote about this one year ago here.)

The Prayer Pot

Inspired by my daughter Erin’s prayer box, I decided I would write down names and put them in a container to pull out and pray over, so I created a list of people as they came to my mind. I didn’t know what to use as my prayer box or basket so that paper simply got buried in a pile of papers on my counter. That pile was then transferred to a bigger pile on my dresser when I was “tidying up” one day.  Weeks later while sorting through some of those piles I came across the paper of names, so I typed and printed them, and cut them up into little strips. I settled on putting them in a little blue pot that I purchased to grow herbs this summer (which I also never did). And even then the little blue pot filled with names sat on top of my kitchen hutch for a few more weeks. Weeks in which I never dipped my hand into the pot – not pulling even one name.

Then one day I knew it was time to get this new way of praying  for others off the ground. One of the very first names I pulled happened to be the name of the person I love more than anyone. We had had a tough weekend and I wasn’t feeling so loving and gracious, so of course God would literally hand me his name. Here is how his name was handed to me ~ I had pulled two names that were stuck together and while I tried to rub them apart between my fingers, another name seemed to leap from the pot and land on the hutch. Interested and slightly amused, I dropped the two stuck names back in the pot and thought ‘This must be the person I am to pray for.’ It turned out to be my husband’s name. ‘Of course.’ I thought to myself. For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. So I dropped my thoughts and ways and prayed for the man God gifted to me as my husband.

The next afternoon I was washing dishes and thinking of my sister-in-law. I was specifically thinking that I should be praying more for her kids. I prayed for them in that moment over the sink, and the next morning I ‘just happened’ to pull the slip with their three names on it. God was getting my attention. I pulled the name of my best friend’s daughter who had recently left for college, then I pulled that friend’s name the next day. Early one morning I pulled my youngest daughter’s name and when she came home from school said she had needed prayer so badly that day; she was amazed to discover I had pulled her name.

On and on it goes – I could tell so many stories of the names I have pulled.

Today was the one that took my breath away though. There is a mom I have never met, but who I think of often and pray for constantly. After months of neglecting the prompting that I believe God put in my heart to reach out to her, on Friday I finally sent her something in the mail. I have been whispering prayers all along the way that this is from God, that my reaching out is not intrusive, that I have perceived this nudging accurately, that it is of God, and not of me.

This morning it was her name I pulled from my prayer pot.
I have been at peace since, all doubts erased.

This prayer pot has been one of the most exciting prayer endeavors I have ever participated in ~I am eager each morning to see who I am to pray for.  I believe God has given me enough of a glimpse to understand that whomever I pull from that prayer pot, there is a reason to be engaged in prayer on behalf of that person (As if I had forgotten how much it matters to pray for others!) If I never get another glimpse of the intentionality that seems to be behind the placing of the names in my hand each morning, I have been reminded that praying for others really matters, and I will hold it as an honor to pray for others in this way that might seem so random, but clearly is not.

Thanks to my daughter for leading the way…

Ephesians 6:18 ~ And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.
Another gift in all of this is that despite my many shortcomings, delays, piles and whatnot, God still is using me. Broken and kinda messy, but still useful and loved.

A Bin and a Prayer

While grabbing a book from the coffee table recently, I knocked my daughter’s book on the floor and out spilled little slips of paper from within. Written on the slips of paper were the names of people ~ friends and peers from school, as well as kids and adults from church, camp and more. I knew instantly these names had come from the bin. Let me explain…

Original Prayer Box Erin has been praying for others for as long as I can remember. When she was about 10 years old I really became aware of her dedication and discipline to pray; she had converted a Valentine’s candy box into a prayer box and in it she had placed both names and categories of people for whom she was praying. (I found myself sometimes telling you I’d pray for you and then forgetting – not nearly as dedicated as my 10 year old!) Erin had (and still has) a particular burden on her heart for soldiers, as well as the vulnerable ~ she had slips of paper in that box that included “foster kids” and “unsung heros”. At 10 years old I discovered she was also more diligent then I was to pray for the leaders of our church when I saw their names inside her box as well.

Today Erin is quickly moving towards being 17 years-old and the spilled slips of paper is evidence that she is still praying for those around her. Over Christmas she told me that her prayer box was very full so she was going to make a prayer bin instead, and so she has. It’s already almost full of names of those she prays for – names of friends and peers, even names those who have slighted her or hurt her feelings. There are kids she teaches in Sunday school, adults who serve alongside her at church, pastors and their families, soldiers – both named and unnamed, kids she has been a counselor for at summer camp, married couples within our circle, kids who are loners, popular and more. I am humbled as I consider her heart and passion for praying for others. She is my example.

So today I followed her lead and have created my own prayer box. I put in my own slips of paper with names that came to my mind, and like Erin, I will continue to add people to my box as life goes on. Also like Erin, I will weekly pull names out of my box and pray for their needs  – both known and unknown.

Thanks, Erin for leading the way on this important spiritual discipline.

And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.
With this in mind, be alert and always keep praying for all the Lord’s people.

Ephesians 6:18

A Girl and her Prayer Box

I am working on a column about how my 16 year-old daughter leads me by her quiet example. Before I share that column it seemed important to give you some history, so I’m taking you back almost five years to show you the place where it all began. The column below first appeared in April of 2009:

April 26, 2009

A Daughter, a Prayer Box & Soldiers

Parts of today’s post are taken from a journal entry written April 17, 2009:

I am on a plane headed to Florida to meet my sister-in-law and I am sitting next to a young combat soldier named Kevin. He is headed back to Iraq to continue his second tour of duty. He was home for R&R; he gets fifteen days…once a year. He says he wasn’t exactly ready to go back, but alas here he is on the plane headed back to complete his duty. What an honor to be placed next to him. This is the second time in a row I have been placed next to a soldier on a plane.

On my last flight his name was Wendall. He was sitting in front of me, I tapped him on the shoulder and thanked him for his service, I then asked him if there was a way to pray for him.

My boldness is inspired by my youngest daughter, Erin, who is 11. One day about a year ago I found a 191 heart box on her dresser. It had been given to her with candy as its contents, but when I opened it this day the contents were sweeter than anything I could have imagined. It was filled with little strips of paper with names on them. Her candy box had become a prayer box. “Soldiers”, “Pastor Stan”, “Unsung Heroes”, “Foster kids” and more…at her tender age, how does she know to pray for leaders, soldiers, and so many others?

I told Wendall about this box, he told me to tell Erin he appreciated the prayers and would pass this on to his friends in Iraq. He asked for us to pray for his safety.

So here I am on a plane again and it is another soldier who sits down next to me. How honored to be placed yet again next to someone who serves on my behalf. I am excited to tell Erin I get to tell  another soldier that he is covered in prayer as he serves.

I learn he joined the army to get out of a tough neighborhood. He didn’t want to go the way so many around him were. The army has been good for him he says, but he is anxious to finish his time (2 more years) and start school. His first tour was in Baghdad and he says it was rough, he saw things he won’t soon forget. This current tour is in northern Iraq and its pretty peaceful. I learn his family is his mom and his sister. He says his mom cries whenever they say goodbye. I can only imagine.

He is sleeping, as curled up as he can be and his head is against the window. He looks so young, he is 22, I am 44, he could be my son. I think of my son, who is 14 and already growing into a man sized body, what if this were my son leaving for Iraq? I think of this soldier’s mom and I find myself praying over his mind, his body, his heart and his soul, may all be protected as he serves our country. May God’s peace fall upon him in great and abiding ways.

When he wakes up, I learn he has a six hour layover in Atlanta, I have felt in my spirit to give him some money for lunch and dinner. How awkward, how will I do that, I wonder? The plane is landing and I know I will regret it if I don’t listen to what I believe is the Holy Spirit. I turn to him and try to hand him some money, telling him I would like to buy him his meals today. “No thanks ma’am” he says very politely. “Please let me do this for you.” “No thank you ma’am.” he says again. I looked him square in the eye and said “Erin would want me to do this for you.” he looked down…took the money and said “Tell Erin I said thanks.”

192 Thank you Erin for being so big in your prayers, for your inspiration, for making me bold on your behalf. Thanks for being the kind of kid who would want to buy a soldier a meal – I know in my heart this is indeed what you would have wanted.

And be safe Kevin, we’re praying for you and your comrades.

You can click here to read about how another soldier’s name made it into Erin’s prayer box in 2011. And here for the one that made it into the box in 2013.

My “Normal” is Not Her “Normal” Today

I awoke this morning to a “normal” morning – no school cancellations or delays; a normal morning. (If you are a Fort Wayne mom – you KNOW what I’m talking about!) Before I pulled the covers back, my immediate first thought was that this was anything but a normal morning for a mom in Wisconsin.

Yesterday at 12:25 pm my daughter sent a text message to her dad and me telling us of the shooting on the Purdue campus, and that she was OK. We soon found out that the shooting took place in the Electrical Engineering building – a building our daughter, an engineering student, has classes within. She said she was headed to that building for a class when she heard the campus sirens; she ducked into the building next door to the Electrical Engineering building; police and ambulances were everywhere.

In the initial moments, with no other information available, I was just incredibly, selfishly grateful my girl was OK. Not knowing if there were other shooters, of if the shooter had been caught, I continued to text her to assure myself of her continued safety.

Then the news came of the arrest. Then the news of the death. Then the identities were made known and it all got a little more personal. I don’t know the victim, Andrew Boldt, but when I saw his picture and saw how active he was as an engineering student, I identified with him as a child much like my own. My heart instantly went to his mom – who likely just experienced four weeks of her son’s presence, laughter and hugs before sending him back to college for his last semester. I can only imagine how proud she was of him and excited for his future – which in a few short months was about to shift as he graduated from Purdue.

My heart agonized for her; this news would send any mom to the floor, in utter agony. The weight too much to bear, I cannot imagine how one gets up after receiving the news that her child was killed so senselessly . I just keep praying for her, for her husband, for the brothers.

There is another mom my mind keeps going to, the mother of Cody Cousins, the suspected shooter. I cannot even begin to process her grief and confusion. Her boy was also a senior at Purdue. When I look at his picture I see a typical college student – not a killer. I cannot imagine how his mother has gotten off the floor either.

As I woke up to an ordinary morning, poured my coffee and drove my daughter to school, I have carried with me these two moms – whom I can only imagine woke up (if they even slept) begging for yesterday to have been a horrific nightmare that surely will be over when they open their eyes. It’s been hard to even put words to my prayers for these moms, though I continue to lift up these women and their families – it’s the only thing that I can do.

Tomorrow I will drive to Purdue to take my daughter to lunch. I want to look into her eyes and hug her tight. Yesterday it seemed she didn’t quite know how to feel, or process this tragedy. When I see her tomorrow she will have been back in the classroom and may want to talk about how that feels. She will have heard stories of those involved – from the friends she knows who were even closer to the scene (one even ordered to the floor by police at gunpoint before being cleared and moved to safety) and I just want to offer her a place to dump all that out. May God guide all those who witnessed this terrible murder, those close to them, and the ones who don’t even know what to feel just yet.

The ripple effects are unknown and far reaching.

One Nation Under Prayer

Neglecting my personal time with God – yep, that’s been me. That wasn’t my intention when we had family arrive in town for a week of visiting, my intention was to continue my Bible reading and dedicated prayer time. Also on the intention list was continuing to get in 10,000 daily steps as well as maintain the calorie counting I had been doing for weeks; I struck out three for three this last week.

But today is a new day.

This morning I planted myself in a chair with my reading plan, my Bible, my prayer journal and a favorite pen. What I experienced was reminiscent of “When You Give a Mouse a Cookie”. Here’s how it went…

I caught up on three days of reading (thank you YouVersion for working to keep me on track) – which meant today after reading parts of 2 Chronicles and  Psalm 48, I also read the entire book of Hosea. Which inclined my heart towards our nation, which directed my mind to our leaders, which led me to pick up my prayer journal, which led to a prayer for our Speaker, our President, our leaders, our people and our land.

This is not like me. I am embarrassed, and even a little ashamed, to admit much of what goes on in politics seems almost too big and complicated for my mind to process. It seems to me as if it’s more negative and more bi-partisan than ever ~ with much irresponsibility I ignore most of it. But today I felt strongly that I was to pray over all of it. So I did. Which then led me to wonder how my little, uninformed prayer could even matter.  Which led me to wonder if we, who believe in God, who lean into prayer and trust that it matters, we who believe our prayers are heard in the throne room, what if ten of us prayed for our President, our Speaker, our leaders, our people, our land? What if a hundred of us prayed, or a thousand, or more?

Which led me to be reminded that the prayer of even one person matters. Moses sought the favor of the Lord on behalf of the people (Exodus 32:14), Abraham stood before the Lord on behalf of the people of Sodom (Genesis 18:22-33). In Ezekiel 22:30 God was looking for just one person to stand before him in the gap on behalf of the land, but none was found. So, yeah, I guess my little, uninformed, probably very feeble prayer mattered today in the throne room.

But And…what if just nine more prayed? Or ninety-nine? Or nine-hundred and ninety-nine prayed. For our President. For our Speaker. For our leaders. For our people. For our land? Not for our perspective to be sought, but for God’s will to be done.

What if….

Random thoughts that cannot seem to be contained

I’m just having a hard time today with the killing of these children and teachers in Connecticut. These are the things swimming in my head today ~

I’m thinking about all the violent, personal warfare video games (and the insistence that it’s fine for kids to be playing these types of games). I’m having a hard time with the efforts that have been spent on legalizing marijuana; this thought courtesy of an article in the paper this morning (in the same section as the many articles on these killings). Why is this something our culture values?

The passionate plea to end ANY mention of God in schools, the expulsion of our church youth leaders from the lunchrooms of our schools, Christmas trees in public places now being called “Holiday Trees” or “Celebration Trees”. We all know they are Christmas trees. You can call them what you want, we still ALL know what they are.

The mocking of Christians & Christian beliefs in mainstream media – and yet the prominent pictures showing up today in mainstream media of people praying, and mainstream media displaying images of the hundreds and thousands of people in churches. We mock it, then are grateful for the peace and comfort these images create within us. I’m grateful mainstream media shows these pictures, I’m just confused by the constant mocking.

My mind can only think about all of this in small bites, then I have to divert my mind. In a chorus of a worship song this morning, I dropped to the floor, with tears splashing on the tile on behalf of these families. When I got up I had to move my mind to a different place – I could not think about it any longer.

I’m horrified for the parents, families and communities who don’t get to divert their minds. I’m just aghast by the families drowning in sorrow today.

Listening to worship music, and praying, praying, praying….

A good article by Rev. C. Emily Heath in the Huff Post. Dealing with Grief: Five things NOT to say, and five things TO say in a trauma involving children. Read it here.

Anger, Frustration and Forgiveness

The last few weeks of parenting the youngest has caused some disruptions in my heart, and it’s messed with my mind a little bit. If you’ve been reading here for awhile, you may know we were foster parents to him when he was eight, after a year and a half he was moved to try a reunification with his birth mother. When that failed, (after trying for a year and a half) he returned three and a half years ago and we adopted him into our family.

That “into our family” part has been tricky. It’s hard to pull in someone who is resisting. But, a few months ago, much of his darkness departed and he began to make good progress. Less argumentative, more peaceful. Brighter eyes and an open attitude towards many issues. My sister recently told him that she had heard he was making some good choices lately and that she was happy and proud of him. He told her “Well, I’ve been doing some healing lately.” Good, good stuff.

Then a few weeks ago it began to feel like everything was coming undone. Anger and deception were back. Arguing and manipulation resurfaced, and then sabotage followed, even an in school suspension this week. But that’s where this post will stop describing him.

Here is what began happening to me, I became full of anger, fear, frustration and bitterness. After so many years, and so much effort, time, tools, therapy, mentoring, teaching, techniques, prayer, prayer, prayer and more prayer, why and how is this happening all over again??!! I was sucked back into the vortex of what seemed dark.

I felt justified in this anger and frustration. For everyone who ever wants to come right out and say “Well, if you just did it this way…”, I invite you to come into my world and parent into this for as many years as I have and then tell me which way to go. (Do I hear a little resentment too?) Which isn’t to say I don’t need direction, I do…oh my gosh…I do.

A few friends – who love me and love the Lord – spoke into me. They allowed me my feelings of anger, frustration, even bitterness. Then they boldly told me those feelings needed to be dealt with so that they could not take root. This was truth, and I knew it.

I needed to open my Bible, Where to begin, what do I need to read? I wondered. I was led, by what I believe was the Holy Spirit, to go right back into my already established reading plan. I know where you are in the Bible, I felt God would tell me.

So I opened my Bible and read Matthew 8, Jeremiah 42 and Isaiah 52. And the prayer flowed….Lord, if you are willing, take away my fear, bitterness and anger…as I continued my prayer – straight from scripture, confessing both my unworthiness and my need for forgiveness, I asked boldly for a calm to the storm – not the one on the outside, but the one on the inside. That I would awake and clothe myself with strength, that I would remember that the Lord goes before me, and is my read guard.That I would act wisely. I confessed my inadequacy and my limitations to parent this one from such a broken foundation. And I placed my eyes back upon Him and asked in His great love, mercy and compassion, that He would hear my prayer.

I was talking to a friend this morning about this and as I shared my prayer, she asked if I would be willing to send her this prayer. She said in her own parenting struggles she could really use this to begin each day.

Maybe those of us who sometimes really, really struggle – maybe we are not alone. But in the darkness, it’s easy to feel alone, and embarrassed, by our feelings – or lack of feelings. I’m here to confess to all of you – sometimes I’m off track. Sometimes I lose hope. Sometimes I do not know what to do with the feelings that well up within me. But then I am reminded, sometimes by a good friend, that Someone knows my course, I have a God in which to place my hope, and He knows exactly how to dispel the feelings as well as shed light on the darkness.

If you need to know this today, then consider this a message from a friend ~ Allow for your feelings, then make sure you deal with them so that they do not take root.

Love,
Sheri
You are forgiving and good, O Lord, abounding in love to all who call to you. Psalm 86:5

A King. A Threat. A Prayer.

In my Bible reading plan for today I was to read Acts 3, 2 Corinthians 7, Jeremiah 28, and Isaiah 36. So, I love when this happens….I read Isaiah 36 and thought hmmmmm….I wonder what happens next. (Seriously, I LOVE when this happens when I am reading the Bible!)

One King (Sennacherib of Assyria) had sent some guys (a field commander and a large army) to another King’s (Hezekiah of Judah) guys and basically said, Let’s make a deal – we’re going to wipe you out anyway, so quit basing your confidence on your King’s message that The Lord will deliver the city, He won’t. So come and make peace with us and then we will take you to a place where you will have plenty and not have to experience the hardship of what will come from battle. Oh yeah, and they throw this in, Furthermore…The Lord himself told me to march against this country and destroy it. (note to myself…both claiming God gave them a message – in direct opposition of each other. Ever been in that position?)

I wrote this in my margin in summary of chapter 36, The people heard a threatening message. They also heard a promise…IF the gave in – or surrendered. I had to read the next chapter.

The cliff notes are that King Hezekiah heard this, tore his clothing, put on sackcloth (as a sign of great distress) and went into the temple of the Lord. This intrigued me because there are so many Kings in the Old Testament that don’t inquire of the Lord. I discovered there had not been a King go to the Temple and pray to the Lord in about 250 years! Now I was really paying attention, this King was someone I wanted to know more about.

He then sent his guys to Isaiah the prophet and asked him to pray. Margin notes added at this point are: 1) Go to the Lord, 2) Seek Godly counsel, 3) Ask for prayer.

There are more threats that come to the King through messengers and a letter. With the threats, they also give evidence of what is to come; they name the countries that have already been destroyed, the kings who are no more and ask about the gods of the destroyed nations.

Here is what I love about Hezekiah…he read the letter and then he went up to the temple of the Lord and spread it out before the Lord. And then he prayed to the Lord.

Really. Let this sink in…the King didn’t go to his army, he didn’t rally the people, he went to his God, who is unseen, and spread it all out before Him and prayed.

Pause. Margin note: Lay it all out before the LORD and pray.

He asks God to give His ear and His eyes to what is going on. He acknowledges the truth and severity of the threats but also the truth that the other gods were fabricated of wood and stone made by human hands. Then he asks God to deliver them from the hand of King Sennacherib – so that all the kingdoms would know the Lord, the only God.

God sends a message to King Hezekiah through the prophet Isaiah and it begins with this, “Because you have prayed to me concerning…..”
Margin note: Prayer matters!

I continued reading on through chapter 38. Hezekiah is ill and is at the point of death. He “turned his face to the wall and prayed to the Lord…” In verse 5 God sends a message again through Isaiah and in part says, “I have heard your prayer and seen your tears…”
Margin note: Prayer matters.

I just had to write about this reading today, and these are my overall takeaways:

  • I have felt threatened – if even in my heart – and there have been whispers of promises that began with, just surrender…it’ll be easier of you do. This hardship will pass if you just give in.
  • This is when it would be time to go and turn to God – even if I haven’t in a long time. However long its been, it hasn’t been 250 years. (!)
  • Seek Godly counsel.
  • Ask for prayer.
  • Lay it ALL out before the Lord. Ask for His eye and His ears. Ask not for selfish reasons but for a result that will make God known and bring Him glory.
  • Prayer matters.
  • Prayer matters.
  • Prayer matters.
    When I am praying for my daughter away at college, it matters. When I lift up friends who come to my mind, parents who are estranged, people suffering with illness with no relief, the prayers offered up matter. I don’t have a prophet coming and telling me the result of my prayers, but I have faith in what is unseen. When there is nothing I can do – there is. Prayer matters. I loved the richness of this word today. Thanks for taking time to read my thoughts on it. You can read Isaiah 36-39 here.