“But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord”—Joshua 24:15 (NIV).
When my grandchildren spend time with me, you can bet I will find traces of their presence when I am cleaning up after they leave. This week was no different when my three youngest grandchildren stayed with me overnight.
Playing outside in the sprinkler means dried grass tracked inside. Toys missed while picking up leads to the discovery of a Hot Wheels underneath the couch. Crumbs on the kitchen floor remind me of how much they enjoyed my home-cooked meal. Those crumbs are also a reminder of the prayers offered by the three before we eat. I am always amazed at the depth of the blessings they give when we bow our heads. Usually, one of my grandsons is the first one to pray. Their prayers gladden my heart because they are so thoughtful.
Currently, I am reading a book on prayer called The Circle Maker: Praying Circles around Your Biggest Dreams and Greatest Fears, by Mark Batterson. The book is a “New York Times” bestseller by the lead pastor of National Community Church, and recognized as one of American’s most innovative churches, in Washington, D.C.
I started reading the book after my associate pastor asked me to lead a class this fall. I hadn’t planned to teach this fall because I had led two studies last year. However, I changed my mind after she mentioned the book title. Someone else had recommended the book and it was on my to-read list anyway.
Batterson’s book has given me valuable insight about prayer. Batterson’s says, “Bold prayers honor God. God honors bold prayers.”
What is bold prayer? It’s prayer requiring divine intervention; it’s prayer giving God the glory and it’s prayer inviting us to pray big audacious prayers. Batterson reminds us of a simple but life-changing truth: God is for us.
Does this mean God will give us a Lamborghini if we pray for one? Is God a genie we can call on to fulfill our every wish? Hardly. Before we start drawing circles around our prayers—which Batterson explains in his book— we have to start with discerning what God wants, what God wills. Batterson adds, “Getting what you want isn’t the goal; the goal is glorifying God by drawing circles around the promises, miracles and dreams He wants for you.”
Another point Batterson makes brings me hope for the daily prayers offered for my children and grandchildren. He says, “Even when we die, our prayers don’t. Each prayer takes on a life, an eternal life, of its own.” The prayers his grandparents offered for him are still coming to fruition today, long after they passed on.
Reminding us that prayers are always answered in God’s timing, the author says, “Never underestimate His ability to show up anytime, anyplace, anyhow.”
To know my prayers will be the legacy I leave my loved ones means I will keep planting those seeds until the day He calls me home. What will you leave behind?
After a 30-year teaching career, Carol Round found redirection as a Christian columnist, author and inspirational speaker. She is the author of nine books, all available at Amazon.com. See her website at www.carolaround.com for more information.