I was treated to a women’s conference at Olive Baptist Church several weeks ago. While the entire conference was refreshing by both music and word, two things continue to ring in my ear.
One, is a song the Sisters performed entitled, “Under His Wings.” Anyone that knows me, knows that Psalm 91:4 is my all-time favorite. I first read that scripture in January of 2001. I was in my first 18 months of sobriety and 15 months of living a new life as a new creation in Jesus when I was asked if I had ever been on a prayer walk. I had never heard of a “prayer walk” so the lady I was cleaning for explained . . . you just walk and pray, ask God to show you what He wants you to see. For my first prayer walk, I took my Bible and went to the beach . . . after all, that is where EVERYBODY goes to hear from Jesus so SURELY God must be there . . . ha! That’s another post for another day, but what I have learned in the years since is it doesn’t matter where you talk to God, just talk. He is listening, but be willing to listen to what He is speaking. Anyway, sorry, got side tracked. During the prayer walk I was looking for God so hard I was missing Him. I mean it. I literally sat down. Not a soul on the beach. Listened to the waves. Dug my feet in the sand and waited. Asked God, “Are you there? What am I supposed to be listening for?” Still nothing. In my discouragement, I began digging my feet in the sand even more. Then a nasty old icky USED band-aid appeared. Instantly the Lord spoke to me, “I will be your healer.” He then gave me the scripture of Psalm 147:3. Ah. It made since. Jesus became my band-aid. My healer. I put that nasty old USED band-aid in my Bible . . . NAH! I’m just kidding, but I did go home and put a new band-aid in my Bible at Psalm 147:3 to be my constant visual reminder of who He is to me. As I left the beach that day, there were hundreds of seagulls. Hovering. Freaking me out hovering. I had no food nor was there anyone else on the beach. They hovered over me all the way to my car. I got in the car. The hovered. I just didn’t get it until hours later. I did a word search on birds in the Bible and found nothing, but as if God whispered in my ears . . . the word “feathers” came to mind. It was then, doing a Bible search the scripture Psalm 91:4 was given to me. I can not count or even remember the number of times (HUNDREDS I TELL YOU, HUNDREDS!) that God has used feathers as my visual reminder of his protection over my life. So, when the Sister’s quoted Psalm 91:4 I thought I was going to die. My heart had been hardened, hurt, and resentful. I had taken my eyes off the cross and had been living in my circumstances instead of His grace and strength. But God used that song that night to show me I was in the right place at the right time. I was, and still am thankful for that touch from heaven that night.
The other, was when the speaker, Tammy Whitehurst (Joy for the Journey) spoke of a woman whose daughter was possessed and she went to Jesus to ask for the girl’s healing. I had heard of that scripture, but honestly, I never got it, but Tammy said something that night that pulled me in. Got my attention and gave me an “ah-ha” moment. She said, “The woman had been praying ‘help me, Lord’ but not worshiping God.” Oh my. I remember the tears flowing the burden of my heart . . . I felt as if my heart was going to beat out of my chest it was beating so hard. “Lord,” I thought, “I haven’t been worshiping you. I’ve been begging you to ‘help me’ but not worshiping you.” Whew. Now don’t take from this that I believe my children are possessed. Good grief. I can hear it already. What I AM saying is, instead of praying that God would heal my two special needs children, or give me the strength to raise them, or instead of asking for ways to improve our lives or whatever . . . I asked God to “help me deal.” Shmsh. Well if that is all I want out of life, that is going to be one miserable life for not only myself, but my kids! And I personally want more than that.
I came home and read the scripture of this woman (found in Matthew 15:21-28), but I still didn’t ‘get’ one part about the crumbs. it just didn’t click, so I asked Tammy about that. She explained briefly, but shared with me the link to a sermon that she said would explain it wonderfully! Boy was she right on (FINALLY I AM GETTING TO THE POINT OF THIS POST! Agh!)
Now, this is a little long, but WOW! As my husband puts it, “THAT DOG CAN HUNT!! This is written in such a way I could understand. It was not over my head at all. Now I have no clue who this man is or what he sounds like, but it was written so well it was as if I could actually hear/imagine him preaching. I had goosebumps through it. And, I cried through it.
IF you are struggling in your faith right now with unanswered prayer . . . I encourage you first and foremost to worship Him through the pain, then continue to seek Him and make your request known to Him, and do it boldly.