All too often, I let fear and insecurities hold me back. Prayer is one area that I struggle with. Not so much praying silently or just me and God, but praying out loud. God has helped me overcome a lot of that fear, but I still find myself at different times not wanting to pray big prayers but instead stick to the nice, safe prayers. Sometimes it is because I'm just not sure what I should pray. Other times, I'm afraid that I'll pray the wrong thing. Sometimes it is lack of faith or confusion on what I really believe about prayer and how God works.
I was reminded tonight of why Jesus said we need to come to Him like a little child. That it is children's faith that best reflects how His Kingdom should be lived out. My little Merry was who God used.
Our We Will Go family has been spending extra time this week in prayer and reflection on God's goodness as part of the Festival of Shelters. In fact, we've been using our pavilion as a 24/7 place of prayer and worship. It is our shelter during this time. Every Tuesday night, our team meets for prayer time, so tonight, we met outdoors in our "shelter".
After a time of sharing testimonies and encouragement, we all just started praying either as individuals or as pairs. At some point, my Merry paired up with Maegan, one of the young adults who lives here at We Will Go. Maegan started praying over Merry and then reading scripture out loud. As Maegan started reading God's word, Merry says that God "hit her" and told her to start praying out loud. And did she ever!
For about 15 or 20 minutes, she spoke powerful words of truth. She prayed for our city and specific streets. Streets I didn't even know she knew the names of. She referenced scripture verses and proclaimed love. Over and over again she spoke love and declared that everyone would know God's love --- the trash men that drive down our streets, the people flying in planes, all children, everyone! She prayed that words of hatred and sin would be turned into words of love and kindness. She prayed that all would know God.
It was incredible. As people around her started hearing her, they were overwhelmed with joyful blessing.
She got up and started raising her arms and walking around the grounds. She just kept going and going and going.
She has never done this before. Sure, she's prayed out loud for a minute or two during family prayer times or at Sunday School, but never with such power and never for so long.
No one around her doubted that she was praying in the Holy Spirit.
God was in that little girl tonight and she was speaking His heart over this city, over this world.
When she was done, while standing in a corner of the yard off by herself, she simply said "amen" and walked over to me. I gave her a big hug and said "I love you and God loves you so much". She said "I know He loves me. He loves all the children", or something to that affect.
How beautifully trusting. Truly childlike faith.
She didn't worry that she didn't get it all right. That her sentences were ungrammatical here and there or that maybe not everything was 100% theologically accurate. She was just praying what her heart was telling her to pray, and I believe, though imperfectly, she was praying what she was hearing the Spirit tell her to pray.
She did it with abandon and joy. She did it and then when it was done, she knew that God loved and accepted her.
Oh, to have that kind of faith. To pray recklessly and unashamedly. To pray and not worry what others will think. To pray and not be concerned that I won't say it exactly right or might ask something that God doesn't want to do. To pray like my little Merry and then know that God was with me in every word and loves me passionately.
To have that kind of faith would be life changing.
Lord, I am overwhelmed tonight by the honor of being Merry's mother. What a blessing to have a child who prays like this. Lord, help me to be more like Merry. Though I am the mother, in this instance, I have a lot to learn from my little one. Help me learn this lesson well and thank You that you keep loving me, You keep loving all your children, even when we often fail and just don't get it. Thank You for being patient with me. Thank You for giving me the example of my children. Equip me to be the mother they need me to be. And I pray that they will do even greater things than their Father and I can ever imagine doing for Your Kingdom. Thank You, God, for my beautiful and amazing children.