Thursday, May 25, 2017

When Others is Me

Twice today within the span of a couple of hours two unexpected persons surprised me with words that spoke of their prayers for my family.  One was a doctor and the other was a preacher from a neighborhood church of a different brand than mine.  Both spoke with sincerity.  Both caught me by surprise.  Humbled is what we mostly feel when someone tells us they have been praying for us.  I am certainly not the exception.   Grateful is another emotion felt in such moments.  It is a kind of gratitude which can only be experienced as overwhelming. 

But, today there was something different about the moment.  It reminded me that there is much more praying that I need to be doing.  Sometimes our own stuff feels so heavy to us that it commands all our energy and time in our praying.  Without really being aware of it, we can come to a place where our prayers are too much about me and what concerns me.  Certainly, these prayers are heard by our Father in heaven, but today was a reminder that there needs to be some balance.  Even as my name as been called in the prayers of others, so do I need to be more intentional about my prayers for others.

The Word is clear that we are to intercede for others.  In the prayer Jesus taught the disciples to pray, there are parts which reach out toward the needs of others.  And the High Priestly Prayer of Jesus as we find it in John's gospel is surely a prayer for the disciples which includes people like Peter and John, and, you and me.  I remember a missionary story of a prayer warrior who chastised his wife for interrupting his night time prayers saying something like, "There are a world of people for whom I have not yet prayed."  Too often such is true of me.  It is not that I have finished praying for a host of people in need, but that I have failed to get started. 

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