Saturday, January 14, 2006

Praying God Listens

I love the shot of the little girl all wide eyed as everyone bowed their heads. Her mom was busy telling her dad to be quiet "the pastor is praying." The picture, of course is a borrowed one, my shots never turn out this good, and usually I'm far too occupied to get the really candid shots. This one was snapped in a hurry. I've heard many prayers, said even more, but most interesting of all seem to be the prayers that I see in people's lives. Prayer can be group offerings or of an individual nature. There are volumes written on "how" to pray, and, best of all, there are places we can go to hear prayers in process. Everyone has their own way of excercising this spiritual ability. Most interesting to me is how prayer impacts our daily lives. Have you ever been in a hospital walking down the hall and glanced into a room where prayer was in process? It's amazing to me how many people are doing that very thing that I am writing about. Maybe the reason that I'm writing is because lately it seems there is never enough time to pray, and yet that is the very thing that will help in any and all circumstances. One of the questions we hear often is, "Does God really hear my prayers?" I know for certain that He does, but it really is hard to explain. Sometimes the answers to prayer are even more difficult to understand. A young lady in our youth group was ill with mononucleosis(I pray I spelled that correctly)as a result of working two jobs and going to high school. She was a senior at the time and her car was more important than almost any other thing she had. She knew that her tires were really getting bald and with winter approaching she was worried about having an accident. One Wednesday she brought it up at youth group(this was just one week before the mono)and we all prayed about it.
Is it okay to pray for tires for your car? Yup! And anything else that you really need! One of the most beautiful promises to be found in the Bible is the one about God having already prepared the very things we need before we know we need them. Which puts me in mind of that TV thing, "I needed that!" The new year has been one of constant prayer in our home. Not because there are needs(show me a home where there aren't)but because of the needs of others which seem to be so great in the midst of this winter. That picture of the mist rising in the mornings from the water is how I envision the prayers that are constantly lifted to our Creator. An offering and acknowledgement of His presence in our lives. Recently it was pointed out to me as a reminder sort of, that God wants our attention. We were created(as were all things)for God's pleasure. Looking at this from a human point of view I would have to say that there is nothing I enjoy more than being appreciated. How about you? If you really have needs God wants to hear them along with your thanks and praise, of course! Oh yeah, about the young lady....while she was recovering from mono and forced to stay home, someon came along and donated a new set of tires for her car. Funny thing about it, we never did find out who did it but we all gave thanks. One of the young men in the group took the car down to the tire place for her. Everybody in the youth group donated for the cost of mounting and balancing. Her life was blessed by an answered prayer, and we all got to help. I know, life isn't always filled with such perfect endings, but, it never will be either if we aren't using that God-given right to pray to our God. Out here on the Great American Desert prayer is often the only answer we have with which to address the difficulties in life. Maybe it's like that everywhere. In Christ's Love, Preacher.

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