Sunday, November 18, 2007

Helped by prayer

I have always loved the story in Exodus 17 in which Aaron and Hur hold up Moses' arms during the battle with the Amalekites. It is such a powerful illustration of how God has designed us to depend upon other people when we are weak.

I recently experienced something that reminded me of Moses' need for Aaron and Hur. I have been going through a season of spiritual dryness, and this past week I had reached a very low point of doubt and despair. After Thursday night, however, things were different.

So what happened on Thursday that changed things? Thursday night is when my women's group from church meets. After our study we have a time for prayer requests and accountability. I shared with these sisters my struggle and they prayed for me. And that changed everything. I was having a hard time believing that God actually heard my prayers, but it was not hard at all for me to believe that God not only was hearing but would actually answer the prayers of my sisters! This increased my hope and my faith, that God would indeed restore to me the joy of my salvation. And then He actually started answering their own hard heart started softening. What an encouragement to have more faith.

I'm not at all saying that when you get your friends to pray for you that your life will be instantly fixed. But I am saying that the Bible tells us what to do if we are struggling and it comes with a promise: "Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective." I can personally attest to the truth of this verse (James 5:16), and I encourage anyone who is struggling and feeling hopeless to tell someone and have them pray for you. I love how Paul states his need in 2 Corinthians 1:11, "You also must help us by prayer, so that many will give thanks on our behalf for the blessing granted us through the prayers of many."

I dedicate this post to Ashley, Bethany, Krista, Laurel, Melanie, Cindy, Lindsay, Lauren, and Tracy. Thank you, dear sisters, for your love and prayers. I also want to thank my husband who is a continual source of encouragement to me, especially in his patience towards me!

I'll end with one of my most favorite quotes from Dietrich Bonhoeffer's Life Together:

"The Christian needs another Christian who speaks God's Word to him...The Christ in his own heart is weaker than the Christ in the word of his brother; his own heart is uncertain, but his brother's is sure."

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Happy Hallowbirthformation Day!

October 31st means many things to me-

-celebrating Sola Fide, Sola Scriptura, Sola Gratia, Solus Christus, and Soli Deo Gloria

-avoiding all the scary decorations that mark my least favorite American holiday (I disliked Halloween even as a kid...well, except for the candy part)

-and attending the birthday party of one of the most precious little girls at our church (the birthday girl is the princess to the right of the Roman soldier) Here's how we spent our Hallowbirthformation Day:
"The Frog and the Ladybug went to the dance..." (doesn't that sound like a children's song?) It seemed sort of wrong to take our toddlers trick-or-treating....
we all knew who would actually eat the candy....and finally....Katie-bug the Ladybug!
She is STILL talking about the party and everyone's costumes 4 days later!