Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Enlarge My Heart: Prayer

And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. Ephesians 6:18

Here's the truth: when I first began getting prayer request emails from my church, I balked:

I don't know most of the people who are asking for prayer.

And then, I don't have time to pray for all these people and requests.

Ouch. But it's true. That's the attitude, those are the thoughts I had, and sometimes still have.

But, God reminded me of what is becoming a familiar prayer:  Enlarge my heart.

Instead of continuing in lazy selfishness, and then, rather than wasting time in self-flagellation over my lazy selfishness, cry this out to Listening God: Make my heart big enough, so filled with Your love for people, that I pray, pray, pray.

My new response is to ask Him to give me more love, a bigger heart, and then to start right in praying for those who have asked for it, knowing He'll stretch me to become stronger and more and more willing to take these things before Him in prayer.

This is my prayer about prayer: make me willing to sacrifice the time and also willing to sacrifice my thoughts, taking them off myself, the cares of the day, or whatever, and turn them on Jesus and bringing the needs of others before Him. Because, what did Jesus do? Did He turn people away? Did He say He didn't have time for them? After John the Baptist was beheaded, Jesus withdrew by boat privately to a solitary place. Hearing of this, the crowds followed him on foot from the towns. When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them and healed their sick (Mt 14:13-14). Though grieving and interrupted in His attempt to be alone, Jesus had compassion on those who came clamoring for help. It is unChristlike in me to be lazy or unwilling in the area of prayer.

He's also called me to treat others the way I want to be treated. So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you (Mt 7:12) Do I need and want the prayers of others? Do I want them to be concerned about the prayer concerns I share with them?

I am encouraged, though, not because I'm doing so great in this area. I'm not. I'm encouraged because He is showing me the Way. How like Him: Jesus said, I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life....

He's helping me not to camp out in failure-land, but to walk forward with Him in the stretching of my constricted, but so-well-loved-by-Him heart. Oh, to be like Him!

Clearly, we do not have a dress code nor fashion police at our homeschool. They crack me up with their clothing choices some days. They'll ask, Mom, are we going anywhere today? If the answer's no, you can bet on seeing some interesting outfits or too-short shorts, or whatever. And the toe-socks?! They just make me laugh. Oh, do you like the way I "fixed" my school desk? What a schoolish way to deal with the broken leg, hmm?

I told you she grew out of the bassinet! I think she slept in it one more night, maybe two, after this photo was taken. And her outfit: a great consignment sale find!

490 newly re-seasoned iron skillets (thanks to my husband - thanks!)

491 Mrs. M watching #3, 4, and 5 while I took #1 and 2 to their first orthodontic evaluation

492 got a must-do grocery run done with only EG and MK in tow, since the orthodontist finished up much faster than anticipated

493 hearing a great sermon yesterday on CD by John Piper

494 If you're happy and you know it, kick your mom! (CJ pumps those fat legs during diaper changes, happily kicking me over and over...so we made up a song)

495 CA's delight at her new hand-me-downs from the big sisters...loves everything

496  that MK did well at the orthodontist...these types of appointments have typically been really hard for her, but she did great!

497 Christmas scent simmering

498 that my mom sent me gobs of cloves and bay leaves to use for Christmas scent

499 my kids are just neat people - I'm loving getting to know them in new ways as they mature and we start talking and discussing things at a different level

500 my little baby rolled to her side today - amazing - in so many ways, it still all feels new and first-time, this fifth baby...


  1. Oh, our hearts are so crowded with selfishness and pride... our only hope is for Him to enlarge us, to stretch us. This is another convicting, challenging post; I'll be side-barring it.

    I love EG's rainbow socks and miss CJ looks like a happy Christmas elf! Fun to see glimpses of your school day.

  2. P.S. My third baby seems like my first, except I'm way more relaxed!

  3. I'm way more laid back too...schedules? What?

    The only way I'm not more relaxed: sickness/health. I have no idea why, but I've tended toward more concern and fear with CJ than with the others!

  4. God has really been convicting me on my prayer life as well and when I say I will pray for someone - do I really do it? How I now try to pray right when I tell them I will pray or as soon as I think of that person, though I do not always have success.

    Lovin the colorful socks-made me laugh!

    And with CJ's kicking you during diaper changing, Colton has started saying "Kick you seat Momma" while in the car, which means he is in his carseat trying to kick my seat - love it, love it!!