Friday, April 18, 2008
One Thousand Gifts and Answered Prayer
I sat at the little kitchen table in my Mom’s home yesterday, and we shared tea and conversation. She is one of the most precious gifts the Father has given me. When I am in her presence, I am no longer the one who carries the titles of Mom and Grandmother and all the inherent responsibilities. I am simply her child. The times of sharing my heart with her, without fear of judgement or censure, are some of the most precious in my life. She shares her heart with me as well, and I am honored by her trust and enriched by her wisdom.
It was her turn to share some thoughts with me yesterday. She spoke about a conversation she had had with my daughter-in-law. They were talking about the difficult circumstances our family is facing right now. They loom so large as do the times of suffering in any family. My daughter-in-law, in a moment of pure honesty said, “I sometimes wonder if God hears my prayers.” Mom’s reply, “I sometimes wonder that too honey.” Even after more than sixty years of walking with the Lord….”I sometimes wonder that too honey.”
We have prayed fervently over the circumstances – beseeching God over and over again to intervene; to work miracles where that is the only possible answer. They are not frivolous things. They are life changing things. Yet heaven seems so silent.
I thought of that last night as I lay in bed and watched the flashes of lightning and listened to the roll of thunder. The heavens opened and it rained. I have been praying for rain for weeks. It has been so dry here. The grass was brown, the creek beds dry and rocky, the water level in the ponds and lakes dramatically lower. Farmers were becoming desperate. I prayed and prayed and for so long heaven was silent. I began to wonder if it was some sort of judgement. Surely I am not deserving of any good thing. (As you can see, I am of a rather dramatic bent.)
The weatherman said there would be rain last night, but there was a good chance it would stay north and west of us. I resigned myself. Then the lightning flashed – and my hopes rose. It rained!! And I thought to myself, He heard. He heard the very first prayer, and He answered – in His time. Suddenly there was new hope for all those prayers we have prayed and continued to pray. Of course He hears and of course He will answer. We become discouraged because it does not happen according to our timetable and the way in which we have planned. But He hears, and He has promised to answer. There will be rain.
“I prayed to the Lord, and He answered me. He freed me from all my fears.”
111. a beautiful new header: Susie’s creative gift
112. new opportunity for our son
113. an unexpected gift to our younger son – amazing generosity
114. long conversations with my daughters-in-law; so blessed by their faith and love for the Lord
115. a new plant (a gift from my Mom’s friend); it is a Crown of Thorns with tiny orange flowers and huge, lethal-looking thorns. Did such thorns pierce the flesh of Jesus?
116. the pleasure of a good, wholesome movie- getting lost in the story and the magnificent scenery.
117. watching the Final Four with my husband and splurging with chips (not worrying about calories or cholesterol for one evening!)
118. all the windows open; fresh breezes blowing through the house
119. working in my flower garden
120. new shoes – two pair!
121. the tiny leaves of a new violet plant poking through the soil
122. a long nap on a quiet Sunday afternoon
123. sharing cooking duties with my husband, working together
124. Jane Austen’s exquisite writing
125. celebrating our grandson’s 13th birthday
126. seeing the faithfulness of God in the lives of those experiencing devastating tragedy
127. time with my Mom and Dad – sharing conversation and wonderful memories
128. a sweet little granddaughter playing soccer
129. listening to beautiful music
130. raspberry iced tea – with lots of ice
131. a letter from our special boy in Albania – with a picture!
132. the feel of my small, old devotional book in my hands, the uplifting words of Spurgeon.
“Every good thing bestowed and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from
the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation, or shifting shadow.” James 1:17