Sunday, April 29, 2012

Without Ceasing

This morning I was reading Chapter 1 of Romans.  You can read a scripture several times and all of a sudden something with stand out.  When I read Romans 1:9, “For God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of his Son, that without ceasing I make mention of you always in my prayer” (underscore mine) it spoke to me. 

Yesterday, I was honored at a luncheon along with 22 other women.  The theme for the luncheon was “Extraordinary Women Doing Extra Ordinary Things.”  My sister asked me how did I get selected; what were the criteria?  I told her I didn’t know.  After reading the brief bio this organization wrote about me, it became clear.  It was noted that ”that my ministry is visiting the sick, shut in, and bereaved families in their time of need”, “if you need a special prayer,” I’m the one to call, and that I “will sit and hold your hand when you need that extra lift to get you through.” 

I had no idea in 2006, when I quit my well-paid job with perks and excellent benefits, what the Lord had planned for me.  I had long ago adopted Jeremiah 29:11 as one of my favorite scriptures: For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.  His plan for me - a ministry of prayer and visitation - became clearer over time. 

For years I have written my prayers in journals which help me remember those who need prayer without ceasing.  I focus on the sick and bereaved the most.  I pray for bereaved families for two years.  I lift to God my family (my husband, children, parents, siblings, grandchildren, extended family), my church family, friends, neighbors, those serving in the military and elected officials (1 Tim 1:1-2), young people who I know are going through a tough time, my three World Vision children and my four Godsons, and those who I know who are incarcerated.  God never fails to place someone on my heart. 

I have shared with my prayer partners that often my heart is burdened because of what others are enduring.  We are instructed in Galatians 6:2 Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.  I get overwhelmed sometimes by what others are going through, but I also receive encouragement as I see God answering my prayers.    

If you pray that that our God would count me worthy of this calling, and fulfil all the good pleasure of His goodness, and the work of faith with power (2 Thes.1:11) there is no doubt that I will continue to visit the sick, comfort the bereaved, and serve as a prayer intercessor without ceasing as the Lord leads me.  To God be the Glory, Honor and Praise!