Grandma's Quilt of Prayer (Day 2 from Cleansing Thoughts)

 



    The woods seemed to be bright with every shade of gold, orange, yellow, and rust from the maple trees, but there was one in particular that stood out from all the others because it had every shade within its branches. The leaves near the top were a bright red which seemed to blend into rust, while others on the same side facing the sun were a vivid orange to soft gold, yet there were still shades of yellow and green that spotted the tree, which brought out its uniqueness. As I was studying it, I began to think or our oldest son. From the time he was a little boy, he never ceased to amaze me. Maybe it was because I did not get to spend much time with him. He lived with his mother and only came to visit a few weeks during the summer, but just before his eighteenth birthday, he came to live with us. Like his father, he was quite, but there always seemed to be brewing just under the surface that undoubtedly would add a little spice to our lives. I remember one day shortly after he came to live with us, things were not going well. He resented being there, and taking discipline from me was hard on both of us. While I was praying for him and asking the Lord to show me what to do, this scripture kept repeating in my mind: "Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it" (Proverbs 22:6, NKJV). But when I looked at him, I did not see a child: I saw a young man, and then the Lord gently reminded me that to Him, he was a child. Somehow, I had to find a way to see him as the Lord saw him and not as this rebellious young man wreaking havoc in our lives. I began to pray for the wisdom, love, and the discipline I needed in my own life to be able to nurture his spiritual and emotional growth. I needed to understand his unique personality, talents, and ambitions before I could help him turn from the current path of destruction he was on to one that would follow God's will for his life. He has presented as many challenges along the way as this tree's leaves are in color, but the rewards far outnumber them as I have learned to look at him through God's eyes.

    



    In every fall landscape, there is always the stately evergreen that seems to rise far above the quiltlike effect of color created by the various leaves, never changing and ever-present, standing tall and unyielding against the test of time. The evergreen remains the same through each season as a  constant reminder that life goes on no matter how hard times seem to get, I thought of my husband and how, over all the years we been together, he has remained the same. Habits, likes, and dislikes--his nature faces every circumstance with the same unyielding strength as the evergreen. I have seen this man face difficulties that would bring most to their knees, never showing signs of weakness, always remaining steadfast and determined. Just as the evergreen provides a safe haven for the animals through the seasons, he has been an excellent provider and shelter for his family through the storms of life. It has been my constant prayer that God would grant him "according to the riches of His glory, [that he would] be strengthened with might through faith; [that he would] be, rooted and grounded in love, [and] may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width, and length, and depth and height--to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that [he] may be filled with the fullness of God" (Ephesians 3:16-19, NKJV).




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