Monday, April 4, 2011

“if i’m not praying for my children, who is?” Guest blogger Toni Margolis

I was so touched by my dear friend Toni's recent post on her personal blog about prayer and the effectiveness of prayer that I asked her to be our SkyMom GUEST BLOGGER!!!!  We as Moms have a powerful tool that we can use against the enemy
 in the power of PRAYER with PRAYING for our CHILDREN...

Thank you Toni for sharing with us ~

gayla ‘other’ sister.....gave me this little plaque a few months ago.
i keep it in the console between the seats in my car.
i just love it every time i open the lid and and get to read this and am reminded of THE MOST IMPORTANT thing i can do for my family and friends.
i heard the quote awhile back:
“if i’m not praying for my children, who is?”
and it struck me hard.
think about it.
you cannot count on a single other person in the world to pray for YOUR child by name unless you specifically ask them to.
many of you are blessed to have spouses who do, and we all certainly hope our own parents and siblings do, and would love to think that our friends and teachers do, but unless it is done out loud we can’t really know that they are. 
or that they aren’t throwing out the blanket “please watch over____” prayer.
i believe that many Christians spout off the proverbial statement “i’ll be praying for you”, but never actually take the time to do it.
and believe me, i’m not judging.
i’ve been guilty myself on more occasions than i’d like to count.
the intention is there.
the motivation is pure.
but often times i think it’s something people say, but then they go back into their own little world and on with the next thing in their day and the actual act of talking to God about whatever it is they say they would pray about never happens. 
not because they didn’t want to. 
not because they never intended to. 
not because it’s unimportant to them. 
but it just gets left undone.
part of my opinion is just that.  my opinion.
but part of it is also having conversations with friends who are willing to admit their faults. 
and to actually be able to admit that you didn’t follow though with a prayer is a hard one! isn’t it?
for some reason it’s much harder to admit that than to admit that you sometimes fall asleep when trying to pray at the end of the day. 
or that sometimes your mind wanders. 
or that a conversation in the other room, or on the TV or radio grabs your attention away.
those seem to be more like ‘frustrations’ than actually having to admit that you didn’t follow through.
at least to me it seems that way....

i was in a Sunday school class a few years ago and the leader had everyone in the room close their eyes and told us he’d like for us 
to silently pray for anything that we had on our minds for 5 minutes.
for 5 minutes!
the blink of an eye, right?
the room went totally silent as we all closed our eyes and began our own individual conversations with God.
pretty soon, however, people started to sniffle.
to cough.
to rub their hands together.
to move their feet.
to play with their watches or rings.
to rearrange the Bible in their laps. 
the A/C seemed to get louder. 
the voices in the next room less muffled. 
the door down the hall more squeaky.
the very breath of my neighbor more audible!
and then he said we could stop.
and then he asked if we thought we had made it to 5 minutes.
i doubt there was a person in the room who was surprised to hear that we hadn’t.
i don’t remember the actual amount of time, but it was nothing.
maybe 2 or 3 minutes.
and a whole roomful of grown adult Christians was kind of blown away at the exercise.
to think that of all the situations we have in our lives to pray about and of all the people we have in our lives to pray for, then to realize that we couldn’t sustain a silent prayer for 5 minutes without at the very least having our minds wander to the itch we now have on our earlobe was humbling.  at least to me it was.
we then moved into the topic of prayer and how satan does anything he can to keep us from doing it.
it is his biggest threat and he is determined to keep us from it!

i have heard at some point in my life that satan cannot read our minds....he cannot hear us when we are silently praying.  so though he didn’t have a clue what we were all praying for or about in Sunday school that morning, he knew we were praying because he heard our leader ask us to do so.
and he made more distractions in that room that i could count!!!

this leads me to another powerful exercise i was apart of in a women’s Bible study not that long ago.
we were in a large was a wonderful study that had attracted many moms....and were divided into small groups by tables.
this particular day, our leader told us that she wanted us to take the time to pray for our children. 
by name.
i have been in plenty of situations where groups of people were asked to bow their heads and pray, but the kicker in this exercise was she wanted us to take turns at our tables and do it OUT LOUD!!!!
immediately there was a palpable spike in the level of anxiety in the room, but being the dutiful moms that we were, we held hands, closed our eyes and one of the ladies at my table began to pray.
the room was quickly filled with the voices of other moms at other tables.
it was almost like an electric buzz.
the feelings that came over me were almost overwhelming.
to hear the voices of so many moms praying for their kids one by one by one was one of the powerful things i’ve ever been apart of.
though i could really only hear the prayers of those at my table, it was an amazing thing to witness.
when it was my turn, i was overcome by emotion.  
it was just so personal!
it has never been my strong suit to talk in front of others, much less pray in front of them, much less pray specific prayers in front of them, much less pray for my babies in my front them!
but it was something i was honored to do.
lift up my girls to God in front of anyone who was within earshot to hear....including satan, himself....and declare them my Savior’s!
and let me tell you....the only distractions in the room during that particular exercise were the type that are welcome.
sobs of surrender and cries for help.
tears of joy and sniffles of thankfulness.
hand squeezes of support.
hugs of love.

you see, satan couldn’t drown out the voices of those speaking to God!

never for a second when i put the ‘cool iphone pic of the day’
up at the top of this post and started to write, did i think i would say all that i just said!
God just kinda took over & what i wrote is actually what i think HE wrote!

now in reading back over it, i don’t want to change it, or rewrite it, but
please don’t get me wrong and think that i think the part about people not following through with their declarations of prayer fits everyone!
(at least not 100% of the time!)
i believe there are many many many people out there who say they will pray for you and then actually do it.
many of those people i am blessed to call my friends.
friends i seek out with specific prayer requests.
friends i trust wholeheartedly with my privacy and my requests and know they will lift up any situation without an ounce of hesitancy.
i call them my prayer warriors and am extremely thankful that God put them in my life.
in fact, i posted the above ‘cool iphone pic of the day’ on my FB page a couple of months ago with the caption:
“Cannot imagine my life w/o my friends. And those who give me the priviledge of praying for them and those who pray alongside me add an extra sparkle to my world;)”
so.....please know that if you ask me to pray for you....or if i say i am going to pray for you.....that i am fully committed to following through.
i am touched and grateful when someone prays for me and my family but i am HONORED when they give me the privilege of praying for them. 
i believe in prayer....whether or not God gives the answer WE want.
take time to pray!
~ Toni Margolis

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