A Suitable Helpmate to her husband.
May I be honest? For someone who has witnessed the power of prayer, I rarely pray… And when I do, I have such a hard time.
I am never consistent. I would make prayer schedules at the start of the year to pray and fast, after a couple of months, slowly but surely, I stop. I would bring prayer books and e-books all the time wherever I go but I don’t use them as often as I would like.
Truth is, I believe I don’t pray because I lack faith. I am afraid to persistently and fervently pray for my heart’s desires because I’m afraid to be disappointed. I’m afraid to pray and pray for something to the point that my heart would be so attached to it that when God says “no,” I would be crushed. I prefer to keep a safe distance between me and my heart’s desires that when I don’t get them, I can easily brush it off.
Maybe you’re wondering what brought about this lack of trust. I guess it was the series of heartbreaks I experienced from 2007 until 2009. Without going into too much detail, those were the years where my dad died of cancer, me and my boyfriend (who is now my husband) of 7 years broke up, my mom had cancer and taking care of her was both physically and emotionally draining, and my mom eventually died. I was just so afraid of more disappointments.
But as I was meditating on the Gospels in my quiet time, I noticed how Jesus NEVER turned away people who asked for His help and He always had compassion for those who needed His healing. Even if He was busy, in need ofsolitude, or just plain passing by, He always met the needs of those who approached Him and asked for His help.
Tonight I was reading about the paralytic in Mark chapter 2. Jesus was teaching in a crowded house and four friends brought their paralyzed friend to be healed. But because the house was so crowded that they could not enter, they made a hole in the roof so they could lower their friend in front of Jesus. What struck me is what is said about their faith. That it was their faith that Jesus saw that made Him heal the man.
I realized that they showed faith by being persistent.
I hate waiting in lines. If there was a long line in the comfort room, no matter how much I need to go, I’d rather turn around, hold it in, and wait for the crowd to clear. If I were the four friends, I’d say, “there’s just too many people. I don’t want the hassle and stress of trying to get through the crowd. Let’s just go back early tomorrow. I’m sure Jesus will still be here.”
But that’s not what they did. They found a way to go before Jesus and get their need noticed. Imagine how difficult it would have been to climb the house to get to the roof while carrying your paralyzed friend in a stretcher. The effort ofdigging through a roof and the embarrassment of just being so desperate.
But they are desperate, aren’t they? Jesus is literally the ONLY solution to their need. No one else can meet their need, only Jesus can. No one else has the power to heal their friend.
And I realize that is also the kind of faith I must show. First, to be persistent to ask Him even when it takes a little bit more discomfort and effort from me. I AM desperate. Apart from Him my life is NOTHING. But more than that, to trust Him that I can come before Him with something that is so important and dear to my heart and that what matters to me matters to Him and He is not going to just stomp on my prayers like they are a waste of His time.
God cares. And one of my most favorite quotes that I heard from one of CCF’s pastors is, “God’s Will is always motivated by love.”
Yesterday I was watching History channel’s series entitled The Bible, and was thinking to myself how frustratingly unfaithful the Israelites are that even if they’ve seen miracles upon miracles they still have a hard time trusting the Lord. But now I realize that I am no different from the Israelites. I need to trust God. Trust Him enough that when I ask for something, He listens and desires to always give me what’s best. That He is for me and not against me.
I’ve always thought that faith means going to God, telling Him what you need in passing, and just letting it be. But here God is teaching me that faith is persistence. If you can’t go through the door, go through the roof!
What is your biggest dream? For the longest time my dream was having a simple but beautiful house of our own. I saw how much my parents regretted not having their own house and experienced the monthly burden of paying rent for a house they didn’t own. It was my life’s goal to give them a house. Since 7th grade I have been dreaming and visualizing our future house. I remember drawing my ideal house in a piece of paper while praying to God about it. In high school I even computed how much i need to save from my future salary to be able to buy a house.
About 15 years later my parents have died and I didn’t even come close to giving them a house. Now with a family ofmy own, Yuklid and I still continue to dream.
God placed in my heart a promise that I often struggled with (did He really say this or is it just me?) I felt like He was telling me: I will provide for your need for a home through My people (committed followers of Jesus). But when there seemed to be no progress, I felt insecure.
Time was running out. The 27sqm condo unit we are renting seemed to shrink before our very eyes as our family has grown bigger. I recall the conversations we had where we struggled with believing that God will come through for us and provide.
I am ashamed to admit this, but too often we have said to each other, “I know God is more than capable of providing for our needs but why won’t He? Why doesn’t He seem to care for us?” Have you asked a similar question?
Well, as I have shared with you in my previous entry, God has been teaching me about faith in my personal devotions. Faith is persistent, faith is humble, faith is specific, faith is aggressive.
Truth is, having my own home is no longer my biggest dream. My heart’s desire is growing old (and dying) with my husband and seeing our little boy grow up and marry. Nevertheless, a house is still pretty high on my list. But I came to a point where I told God that I don’t care about the home anymore, if only He would allow me to grow old with Yux and see Psalm have a family. It’s as if I’m telling God, “You can’t give me both so just give me this one.”
Have you ever prayed a prayer like that? A loved one is gravely ill and you pray something like, “Lord just remove the sickness from her and just give it to me.” Like God just HAS TO make someone—ANYONE—sick. But God is not Someone who just wants to exploit or Someone who is stingy with blessings.
God rebuked me. He is all powerful! Why can’t He give me both? Who am I kidding playing the humble child asking for only one thing when my Father is able to give me both? It’s as though I’m mocking His greatness and, worse, doubting His love.
And so I asked Him for the house again. A couple of weeks later, it seemed like He made my prayer more specific. (I have moments when I feel my prayers are not from me but from the Holy Spirit.) I prayed that God would cause someone to lend their house for free so that we can use the money we pay for rent to save for payment for our own home (so that we can also learn financial stewardship).
March 24, 9:30am, a week or so later, a couple from our church texted to tell us that they want to lend us their brand new condo unit (double the size of ours) for FREE! It was in an area we were planning to move to and it is such a beautiful property!
As Yuklid and I read the text over and over we both stared at each other in utter amazement at what God has done! I was tempted to be proud and insist that we pay but it would be like me insisting to pay my way to Heaven! I can’t do it and I am saying “no” to God’s gift!
It would be an understatement to say that I felt so small before God, humiliated for ever doubting Him. This is all grace—-undeserved favor. One of the most humbling moments of my life!
In Luke 17:5-6 Jesus had the following conversation with His disciples, “The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!”
And the Lord said, “If you had faith like a grain of mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you.” Now I realize what faith—-even a really really tiny one—-can do.
Please do include us in your prayers whenever you are reminded of us. May we be good stewards of this blessing through:
Okay, here it goes…
I’ve been wanting to start a blog for quite some time, being inspired by several bloggers out there. But just like how I always get writer’s block whenever I start any literary piece, there’s always something that prevents me from getting started with my blog.
But with much encouragement from my wonderful husband, I will, once and for all, take this step of faith.
As should be the chief objective of all my endeavors, the goal of this blog is primarily to bring honor to God and to bless others through sharing my experiences as a wife, mother, and full-time church worker. But what I want to share with you mostly is my adventures in prayer.
Though I am no expert when it comes to prayer and I would definitely not fall under “the most prayerful women” category, prayer is very close to my heart. Especially praying for my husband. When God called me to be a suitable helpmate to Yuklid, I believe that one of my main roles is to pray for him. Pray for him when he needs wisdom, encouragement, guidance, blessings, correction and rebuking. These are just some of the things that fill my prayer notebook for my husband. And it’s exciting to see God’s answers unfold through time. Now, my prayer notebook also contains heartfelt prayers for my little baby boy, Psalm. And though i cannot deny that I still have those paranoid-mom moments, being able to constantly lift him up in prayer, entrusting him to an Almighty God, always gives me peace and perspective.
I do pray that this blog will encourage you, dear reader:-) And feel free to also share your prayer concerns:-) It is an honor to pray for you, and a great privilege to somehow be part of God’s work in your life:-)
“praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints,” Ephesians 6:18
November 2012, Photo taken by Dani Elevazo