“I just don’t know how to pray!”
If you’ve wanted to pray, or tried to pray, then I’m sure you’ve at some point said, thought or felt that…
No?? Just me then… 😉
I would love to encourage all those on a journey of faith with a picture that the Lord showed me as I was praying for our mission partners, the Crokers who are out in Kericho, in south-west Kenya with their young family.
God showed me that it is both the small, quick, one line prayers, as well as the deep times of dwelling in God’s presence and really tuning into his voice, which are necessary to see the breakthrough we are seeking. We should not despise those quick prayers, any more than we would scorn the quickly exchanged words of friends greeting each other and sharing a little news.
Jesus showed me a picture, which is that we, here at home, are collectively are like a big, solid, RAF rescue helicopter, and that the Crokers are like the rescuers on the end of the line dangling down, facing major risks (whether practically or spiritually), in order to help others. Make no mistake, you may think the Crokers are out there so that Mark can simply use his building skills to help others in another part of the world, but that is entirely secondary to the reason God has put in their hearts this call to leave their home.
When Jesus started his ministry, what did he say? See the verses below:
Luke 4:14-19 NLT:
Then Jesus returned to Galilee, filled with the Holy Spirit’s power. Reports about him spread through the whole region. He taught regularly in their synagogues and was praised by everyone. When he came to the village of Nazareth, his boyhood home, he went as usual to the synagogue on the Sabbath and stood up to read the Scriptures. The scroll of Isaiah the prophet was handed to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where this was written:
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released, that the blind will see, that the oppressed will be set free, and that the time of the Lord ’s favor has come.”
Jesus proclaimed the Kingdom of God, and so that too is Mark and Eleanor’s call, to be rescuers, bringing people into the Kingdom, so that those people might be lifted out of poverty and pain in this life, and may start living their eternal life in the Kingdom right now. If you’re not sure what the kingdom of God is actually like, imagine a place where people are filled with the: love, joy, peace, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Gal 5), if we all lived like that wouldn’t the world be amazing?!
So, how do we fit into that picture of the helicopter? Key to the rescue operation is that incredibly strong rope, capable of holding two people. It is, ‘a Kernmantle rope, which is constructed with its interior core (the kern) protected with a woven exterior sheath (mantle) that is designed to optimize strength, durability, and flexibility. The core fibers provide the tensile strength of the rope, while the sheath protects the core from abrasion during use.’ (Wikipedia). The rope is made up of so many individual strands, and the core may well be the core prayer group and the dedicated staff at Trinity, but even our quick one line prayers are like fine gossamer threads woven into that lifeline.
The Crokers have already said that they can really feel the weight of our prayers from afar, in a different way to when they were still here. Let’s make sure that whether we’re in the core or the outer layers, that we, in whatever way we can, play our part in ensuring that rope is as strong as possible that enables them (and all those for whom we’re praying) to do God’s work.