Samuel prayer

I’m young and I’m foolish, I’ve made bad decisions

I block out the news, turn my back on religion

Don’t have no degree, I’m somewhat naive

I’ve made it this far on my own

But lately, that shit ain’t been getting me higher

I lift up my head and the world is on fire

There’s dread in my heart and fear in my bones

And I just don’t know what to say

Maybe I’ll pray, pray

Maybe I’ll pray

I’ve never believed, and you know, but I’m gonna pray

You won’t find me in church (no!) reading the bible (no!)

I am still here and I’m still your disciple

I’m down on my knees, I’m begging you please

I’m broken, alone, and afraid

I’m not a saint, I’m more of a sinner

I don’t wanna lose, but I fear for the winners

When I try to explain, the words run away

That’s why I am stood here today

And I’m gonna pray, pray

Maybe I’ll pray, pray for a glimmer of hope

Maybe I’ll pray, pray

Maybe I’ll pray

I’ve never believed, and you know that I’m gonna

Won’t you call me?

Can we have a one-to-one, please?

Let’s talk about freedom

Everyone prays in the end

Everyone prays in the end

Won’t you call me?

Can we have a one-to-one, please?

Let’s talk about freedom

Everyone prays in the end

Everyone prays in the end

Oh, and I’m gonna pray, I’m gonna pray

I’m gonna pray, pray for a glimmer of hope

Maybe I’ll pray, pray

Maybe I’ll pray

I’ve never believed, and you know, but I’m gonna pray

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So lately my bible study has been in 1 Samuel. I’ve been thinking about how Samuel and the Lord communicated, and sometimes wonder why I don’t have that. Samuel was in constant communication with Him. He walked with the Lord, wholly consumed by Him. Now, I’m not saying that I don’t talk to the Lord, because I do, but it’s not what my day revolves around, but it should.

Our pastor recently gave a message about just this: prayer. The power of prayer. He spoke about the impact that overseas missionaries have because of their constant communication with the Lord. How much more could He do thru me, if I just let him? What if we as a church sought the Lord like Samuel or Elijah? After all, they were just regular guys capable of nothing spectacular on their own… But God. What kind of impact would we make in our community, our nation? These missionaries (my in-laws included) are being used in powerful ways to extend the kingdom. What am I doing?

I feel so challenged to pray, and pray, and pray…. I’m at home most of the time, so even if it gets a little loud, am I going to embarrass myself in front of my kids? Nah. Not sure why I wait, when we start, the Lord will guide us into praying for what He has for us.

This week my heart and thoughts keep going back to the girl I knew in high school who lost her sweet baby Sunday night. The Lord keeps putting it on my heart, and I can’t help but weep and pray. When I feel I’ve reached the end of things to pray for, for this family, in tongues I go. Isn’t that how we pray the perfect prayer when our human minds can’t find words? Hopefully this is the gateway to stretching me into MORE prayer time, less ME time…

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Our youngest daughter, Hannah, is 2 years old and very independent. She thinks she can do everything on her own and gets extremely frustrated if she has to admit, and accept, help. I know exactly where she got that personality trait from – ME!

The Bible tells us that Children are a gift from the Lord. When I think about this truth from a human perspective, I think that my children are given to me for my enjoyment. And children do bring a tremendous amount of laughter, excitement, love and fulfillment into my life, but I have come to learn that this is not the main reason God gives us children.
Children come into our lives totally dependent on us. Their vulnerability and need forces us to learn self denial and the principal of putting others needs before our own. We learn what priorities REALLY are and the difference between “I want” and “I need”. The list of life lessons and character building that come with the gift of children seems endless.
As I watch Hannah on a daily basis, trying to “do it myself”, I am also reminded that God’s gift of children is intended to graciously expose me to my own sins and character weaknesses. God uses our children to open our eyes by allowing us to experience what we are like as we interact, on a daily basis, with little carbon copies of ourselves! Hannah reminds me constantly of my prideful reluctance to ask for help when I need it. It is not a strength to not welcome the help of others, but it is very humbling to accept it! Even as I type that word, I realize that, yet again, God is using the precious gift of children to transform me into His child! He is using a little carbon copy of myself to recreate me into a little carbon copy of Him and hopefully somewhere in the transformation, my children will see the changes and they will self correct. My constant prayer for my children is that God would take them further in their walk with Him than I have gone. I believe He will, but only if I humble myself and accept His help and the help of the others that God has so graciously placed in my life.

I went outside to feed the animals. As my rubber boot hit the wet grass it seemed to transform into a conductor’s baton. With each step the heavens poured out a lively beat. Cody, quickened his step and added cymbal splashes as he leapt from puddle to puddle. Baby joined with her soprano whinny, with Joe’s bass echoing, frogs filled in with a full spectrum of notes and cardinals flitted from tree to tree, accenting the melodies.
All of God’s creation simultaneously moved and sang and breathed His glory right before my eyes! All of my senses drank in the wonderful celebration of life and praise and I was overwhelmed with the feeling that I was standing on Holy ground, witnessing God being exalted! What an amazing foretaste of what is to come !

Have you ever been around peacocks? We actually had some at one time. They are absolutely beautiful to behold -VISUALLY, but have you ever HEARD a peacock? AWFUL!!
They have an obnoxious and loud sound. The joke around here was that God have them such ugly sound to keep them humble, because of their amazing beauty.
Sometimes I think about peacocks in an analytical way, comparing them to some people I have met. Some people are so beautiful to behold VISUALLY, and you think you want to be around them, but it isn’t long before you “hear” what is underneath that beautiful exterior. AWFUL! So many cliches come to mind, Don’t judge a book… Beauty is only skin deep, etc, but there is a great amount of truth in them!
One of the benefits of having a special needs child, is that The Lord uses them in your life to reveal to you if you are in fact only attractive on the outside. But, not only does He use this special person in your life to reveal your true character, but then He uses that amazing person to transform you from the inside! Over time, you look back and can begin to see glimpses of the transformation. It is so humbling to know that not only are you becoming what you were created to be BECAUSE of who God created them to be, but also to know that you need them as much as they need you!
It is a beautiful, symbiotic relationship ordained by God for His glory and our good!
“Do not let your adornment be external—the braiding of hair and the wearing of gold ornaments or fine clothing— but let it be the secret person of the heart in the incorruptible adornment of the quiet and mild spirit, which is of great value in the eyes of God.”1Peter 3:3, 4

“You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb.
You watched over me as I was being formed in utter seclusion,
As I was woven together in the dark of the womb.
You saw me before I was born.
Every day of my life was recorded in your book.
Every moment was laid out BEFORE a single day had passed.
How precious are your thoughts about me, O God!”

Psalm 139

Some life moments become ingrained in our minds as a mental picture, always in the shadows, an integral part of our life. It is there in your lowest of lows and the highest highs! Sometimes the image is clear, sharp and prominent. At other times, it’s a fuzzy background, but it’s always there reminding you from where you have come. This isn’t a bad thing, in fact, it is a precious gift, because it reminds you that life is not stagnant. Our lives continually change, moments, good and bad, ordinary and extraordinary, linked together to form our story. Some of these moments are set apart. They are transitions. As you look back over your life it becomes obvious that they were necessary. God uses these times to chisel and refine us. His goal is not to harm us, but to make us stronger, to prepare us for the final moment–the day that we will finally see Him face to face!

Samuel’s birth is one of these moments in my life. The image of his lifeless body, surrounded by medical personnel, working furiously on his tiny frame and the deafening silence will always be present in my minds eye. It is always there whether I want it to be or not. But, over the years, my perception has changed. When the memory was fresh and the wounds still raw and oozing, it represented the death of hope- it would throw me back into the Valley of Weeping. Yet, over the years, The Lord has applied a soothing balm and wrapped those wounds. At times, not only did I think I would never find a way out of the valley, but I seemed to be going deeper into it. Yet, The Lord never left me and slowly, almost Incomprehensibly, He has been leading me out of the valley. I am starting to see glimpses of hope for the future and I can look back without overwhelming regret. I am becoming aware that the Valley of Weeping is being transformed into a place of refreshing springs and where pools of blessing collect after the rains! By Gods grace, I will continue to grow stronger until that final day.

“When they walk through the Valley of Weeping, it will become a place of refreshing springs, where pools of blessing collect after the rains! They will continue to grow stronger, and each of them will appear before God in Jerusalem.” Psalm 84:6-7

samuel prayer

I received a challenge from a Facebook friend to write three positive posts a day for five days. There is great benefit in this daily exercise. Daily making a determined effort to look for the good instead of focusing on the bad does not necessarily change your circumstances, but it can produce in you the ability to keep pushing through them. The Bible commands us to rejoice always and in everything give thanks and tells us that God hates grumbling and complaining. We are told to think on things that are lovely, pure and of a good report. If we, as followers of Christ, are going to be successful in these attitudes we must train our minds because every action and attitude begins with a thought. I am reminded of this spiritual truth daily with Samuel. In order for Samuel to progress he must diligently and daily exercise to train his brain. Just as his brain injury hinders his body from functioning properly, our sin hinders us from functioning properly. We must diligently and daily exercise our mind (train our brain ) to function (think) properly. Sin has injured our ability to think properly, so we must daily meditate and think on the right things, Gods word, in order to retrain our brain. And as we begin to think properly, the proper actions will follow.

Three positive posts today:
1. God displays His strength in my weakness
2. God will supply all our needs
3. God enables us to do what He requires of us

Journal entry when Samuel was four months old:

I don’t know if I was feeling sorry more for myself or my little Samuel this morning. Every time I hear of a milestone that someone’s baby has reached, I am reminded that my sweet baby has yet to accomplish these things. As I uttered another prayer, I thought of the meaning of his name, “Heard by God”, and I asked, “God, do you hear me? Do you see my tears?” Then Samuel let out a soft cry. I leaned over to pick him up, touching him gently to let him know I was there. As I drew him to my breast, I whispered in his ear ,” God doesn’t give us more than we can bear my Samuel.” And I thought to myself, God has given me this special child as a gift. He is using him to teach me how to love deeper, how to trust more, how to die to myself and be like my savior. He has honored me because He would not have asked this of me if I wasn’t capable of enduring. God isn’t against me, as I have so often thought.
How can such an unexpected turn of events actually make me feel more secure, more loved by God? How is it that I can actually say thank you and mean it? Some how, by the grace of God, we will not only overcome this trial, but we will be victorious in it! For in my weakness is God’s strength revealed!

One very important distinction between man and beast is the ability to reason and debate. The gift of language, like many other gifts, bestowed on us by our creator, has great potential for good and, because of the fall, for evil. With our tongues we can sing praise or spew curses, we can build others up or tear them down, we can speak truth, life and blessing or lies, death and destruction. All of this potential “power” derived from words.
It is with this understanding that my husband and I approached the exciting task of choosing names for our children. When I was pregnant with our sixth child, we had the benefit of knowing that I was carrying a son. He was to be the second son born to us after fifteen years of seeking and praying for God to once again bless our marriage with children. In awe of God’s mercy and grace, we chose the name Samuel Joseph which means, Heard by God, God increases.
At the time, we believed that Samuels name was to be a way of praising God every time we uttered our son’s name. Little did we know how much more meaning those two names would contain for our family!
Samuel’s birth was a traumatic one. A time that we expected to be the genesis of increased joy and hope, instead ushered us into a deep valley filled with despair, confusion, and trials unlike we had ever known.
It has been five years now since God blessed us with our special gift. We have been stretched spiritually, emotionally, physically and our marriage vows tremendously tested. Have we failed in our response? Yes, many times! But God is faithful and at times when we have been prone to wander. He has kept us securely in His hands. Over these years we have come to realize that Samuel’s name has much greater significance than we could have ever imagined. The Lord has used Samuel to teach us how to cry out to God when there seems to be no hope and to cling to the fact that God hears the desperate pleas of the broken hearted. We are learning that every good and perfect gift comes down from our Father in Heaven and that it is He alone that gives the increase. He is the only One in whom we can put our hope! And He alone, is the Only One who never fails!
Many of our friends and family have encouraged us to start this blog for Samuel. Our desire is to bring God glory and to encourage others as they too tread this difficult road called Life. And, if The Lord wills, we hope that this blog will be a vehicle, used by God to display that He, in fact, hears our prayers and will meet Samuel’s needs through the gracious sacrifices of others.

We are in the beginning stages of creating, HOP (Hear Our Prayer) for Samuel and aren’t sure everywhere that it will lead. We are stepping out in faith, finding strength in numbers as God has already brought so many amazing people (of all walks) into our lives. Like Samuel, each of you is a gift from God. Already, He has used you to encourage and speak life, love and hope into our lives!
May God bless you and keep you, may His face continually shine upon you, and give you peace.

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Fighting for your injured child is such a difficult road to navigate. We are in need of prayer for wisdom (and not emotion) to direct our steps! My responses to this trial are not always pretty. It is very difficult at times and the Momma bear keeps rearing her head! I don’t know what to do but to fight for my son and try to provide what he needs. I didn’t peruse NICA-didn’t know anything about it. The Lord brought some amazing people into our lives at the right time and opened this door. I’m guilty of thinking that God was just going to do a super miracle and use NICA to make everything “easier” for our family. I was knocked down with the denial, but The Lord has humbled me (will probably have to do it repeatedly ) and now I am just moving forward and trusting what ever God determines to be best. I am not a perfect vessel and I do get in the way, yet God has placed me on this path for a reason- ME – with all my failings-He doesn’t make mistakes! My God Can turn this around, but even if He doesn’t, still, I will trust Him!

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Samuel Chadwick quotes (showing 1-5 of 5)

“Satan dreads nothing but prayer. His one concern is to keep the saints from praying. He fears nothing from prayerless studies, prayerless work, prayerless religion. He laughs at our toil, he mocks our wisdom, but he trembles when we pray.”

Samuel Chadwick

“There is no power like that of prevailing prayer – of Abraham pleading for Sodom, Jacob wrestling in the stillness of the night, Moses standing in the breach, Hannah intoxicated with sorrow, David heartbroken with remorse and grief, Jesus in sweat and blood. Add to this list from the records of the church your personal observation and experience, and always there is cost of passion unto blood. Such prayer prevails. It turns ordinary mortals into men of power. It brings power. It brings fire. It brings rain. It brings life. It brings God.”

Samuel Chadwick

“The prayer that prevails is not the work of lips and fingertips. It is the cry of a broken heart and the travail of a stricken soul.”

Samuel Chadwick

“The one concern of the Devil is to keep the saints from praying. He fears nothing from prayer-less studies, prayer-less work, prayer-less religion. He laughs at our toil, mocks at our wisdom, but trembles when we pray.”

Samuel Chadwick

“It is every man’s privilege to be fully assured in the will of God. The Divine attention to detail is amazing. Nothing is too trivial for Omniscience. Come straight to God. Do not bother other people. Lay all questions naked before Him, and He will make it plain to you what is His will. When God speaks, His speech is easily understood. All questions of the plain should be settled in the mount, and where there is certainty in the mount there will be victory on the levels and in the valleys.”

Samuel Chadwick The Path of Prayer

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