Did you know that grandmother elephants lead the entire herd? Join me at Beloved Prodigal this week as we shares a guest blog from a son’s perspective, while Bettie’s son, Sean, gives voice to a portion of his story!
Sean: I’m excited to join you today at Beloved Prodigal because I know first-hand the power a praying mother/grandmother has for their prodigal children and grandchildren. What an incredible role they play! No matter what I have faced over the years, I knew Mom and Grandma were always praying for me. They didn’t give up on me or judge me for my faults but they led me to the Father with encouraging words and direction.
This week, my daughters and I learned an incredible fact about elephant herds. We learned that grandmother elephants lead the entire herd! They are the experts at finding food and water and they tell the herd where to go. In other words, they direct the traffic!
It might be funny to talk about grandmother elephants on a prodigal blog, but I couldn’t help but think about a similar role God has given our mothers/ spiritual mothers and grandmothers/ spiritual grandmothers for their families. It’s their prayers, directions, and persistence that lead the family to spiritual food and water.
May you be filled with hope as you pray for your families and lead them to everlasting water. Your love and encouragement will impact them in ways that others can’t. A big thank you to my Mom, my spiritual mothers, and my grandmothers for your wonderful leadership in my life.
Bettie: When I read over my son’s words, I wept as I remembered a distant time when Sean’s Grandma (my husband’s Mom) called me with a very specific question. Her heart was heavy, almost desperate, for her children and her grandchildren, and she longed for Scripture promises to pray over them.
I told her I would pray and call her back (long distance phone calls were not cheap back then!) And just a few weeks ago, I found the notes in my old journal that I had shared with her in that return phone call so many years ago:
“I will pour out my Spirit on your offspring, and my blessing on your descendants.” Isaiah 44:3 NIV
“the offspring of the righteous will be delivered.” Proverbs 11:21
But Sean’s Grandma did not know the trials and the wandering time that Sean would face not long after she and I prayed together. He was only a young teen then. Grandma Gilbert’s life on earth was ended just a year later when a tragic car accident left her fatally wounded. We all thought we had more time with her.
But Jesus knew the things that she needed to speak while she was still with us. Jesus knew the truths that Sean needed to hear from her, truths that feel prophetic now all these years later. In fact, the words were not what he wanted to hear when he was younger. He fought against them, and told me that he was NOT going to be what she said he would be.
What had she said? “Sean, I think you will be a preacher some day.”
Two weeks from now, Sean and his wife and four young daughters will all be heading to Guyana, South America, to join the staff at Youth-With-A-Mission, where preaching will be part of his assignment. Oh, yes, the Lord knew how to speak into a young one’s life through the love and the words of a praying Grandma.
In a stack of books I found when we were cleaning out her home, I found her well-worn copy of Prayer by O. Hallesby. And these words were underlined, and smeared with tear stains:
“To pray is nothing more involved than to lie in the sunshine of His grace, to expose our distress of body and soul to those healing rays which can in a wonderful way counteract and render ineffective the bacteria of sin. To be a man or woman of prayer is to take this sun-cure, to give Jesus, with His wonder-working power, access to our distress night and day.”
Jesus will hear our every distress, and bring His power into every word we pray, because He is our only cure! Weary Mom or Grandma, will you join us as we pray?
“Dear Jesus, We come before you now and lay our distress before you. Help us to give our desperate hearts openly to you. Thank you that you hear every cry, and you long to meet every word with your amazing might and power. Thank you that your Word is life and breath to us. We hold tightly to those promises you have given to us. Grant us eyes of faith to believe that you will rescue our sons and our daughters. Help us to hold onto your Word that tells us the seed of the righteous will be delivered. We cling to you as our only righteousness here in this place today. In your precious name we pray, Jesus, Amen.”