Monthly Archives: August 2013

A Year Long Answered Prayer

A year ago I received an email from a friend desperately asking me to pray for a little girl.
A little girl who was very sick.
A little girl who was spending her days lying in my friend’s arms because she had no strength to do anything else.
A little girl with HIV. 
A little girl who wasn’t allowed to go to school because she had HIV.

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I read the email and my heart was sad. I knew from the words I was reading this was a big deal. I knew my friend would not be asking me to pray if this girl wasn’t very sick. I also knew my role in this situation.

I wasn’t there. My presence would not be known. There was nothing I could physically do.

And my friend knew that. She wasn’t asking me to physically bring her medicine. She wasn’t asking me to physically nurse this girl back to health.

She was simply asking for me to pray. To pray for God’s healing presence to consume the situation.

So I did exactly what was asked of me. I prayed for this little girl. By name, I asked for God to physically heal her body. I didn’t know this girl. I didn’t know her life or daily struggles. But I knew she needed the power of God to intervene in her life.

For days I prayed. Some days multiple times a day.
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This past month I had the absolute privilege of spending my days with this same little girl. We played games together. We did homework together. We were simply just friends.

But every time we hung out I couldn’t help but think of the first time I learned the name of this little girl. The first time I went to Jesus and asked for healing for this little girl. The days I spent praying for someone I didn’t even know. And then I would be reminded of what a blessing it was to see God’s answer to prayer right in front of my face.

That little girl was no longer lying in someone’s arms. She was alive. Running and playing and being silly. She was even able to go to school!
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As I think about how amazing it was to be able to meet this girl a year after I began praying for her I can’t help but be reminded of God’s goodness. To be reminded of his sovereignty in all situations. To be reminded that God truly does delight in hearing from me and answering when I ask him for things.

I was also reminded of just how dependent we are on each other. In asking for prayer. And in praying for others.

This morning I encourage you to remember a time someone asked you to pray about something. They humbly asked because they need your intercession. Are you fulfilling your promise to them?

Or maybe you are the one who needs to ask a friend for prayer. Do you know the importance of having others pray for you? Are you humble enough to ask for someone to intercede on your behalf?

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Time For Another School Year

Summer is over. It’s time for children all across America to put away the suitcases and pull out the backpacks. It’s time for children to put away the swim suits and pull out the new school clothes their parents bought for them. It’s time for children to put away the idea of waking up after lunchtime and pull out the alarm clock set for 6:00 am.

For some children these things all sound really exciting. They get new school supplies. They get a new wardrobe. They get to meet new friends and classmates.

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I was always on the other end of the spectrum. I enjoyed summer vacation and never really looked forward to going back to school after summer vacation. If I was a student reading those statements I would cringe. I would not be excited about any of those things.

So if your child has this same attitude- I get it. I understand their dread in meeting new classmates. Or in waking up early to go sit in class and be lectured. I get it.

Because you see, as a child I always failed to see what a complete blessing it is to receive an education. For me it was just a required part of life. I never saw it as an option. I thought all kids were forced to go to school by their parents.

As I grew up I realized not all kids living in other countries went to school. But I never grasped how much of a blessing it was that I was able to go to school.

Rear view of a little school children raising their hands in the classroom

Not only was I able to go to school but I was able to receive an education for free.

Maybe in your opinion it isn’t exactly free to send your child to school because as an upstanding American citizen you pay taxes that provide free education for children. But in the grand scheme of things your child is receiving a free education if they attend public school.

It is possible for every child in America to attend school and receive a solid education without paying for it.

That is absolutely not the case where I live.

Friday our day was a little switched around and instead of going running about seven in the morning it was eleven before I tied my shoes and headed out the door.

Eleven o’clock on a Friday morning in America means every kid is in school. Some may be eating lunch. Some may be outside at pe. Some may be sitting in a classroom learning. But every child is at school.

As I ran down the road I heard the laughter of children. I saw children pretend fighting with sticks. Or running from their friends as they played what looked like a game of tag. With every house that I passed I saw more and more children outside playing.

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These children were not in school on a Friday morning at eleven o’clock. And they were not in school the day before. And they won’t be in school Monday morning. Because these children don’t go to school.

Not because their parents don’t want them to go. Not because the children are choosing not to go.

They can’t afford it.

School isn’t free. The police don’t send parents to jail if their kids are not in school. The children just don’t go.

Because it is more important for the family to have dinner most nights than for the children to be able to receive an education.

Without the opportunity to receive an education the cycle for these children continues. They are not able to get a well-paid job as an adult. They struggle to provide for their family. They don’t have the opportunities for advancement in life. So the same struggles they grew up with their children then experience.

And until someone pays for their child to go to school the cycle is never broken.

Make sure your child realizes the privilege it is to attend a school where their teachers love and care for them. Make sure your child understands how much of a blessing it is they can go to school for free. Make sure your child knows because of their free education there will be so many more opportunities for them in life than a lot of other children in the world will ever know about.

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