by Dave Geurin

What is one behavior that all of humanity shares? It’s the one thing all humans do in times of trouble. Don’t we cry out to God or some higher power?  There’s something inside us that moves us to ask God to rescue us and to ask him to fulfill our desires and to thank him for our blessings.

Everyone prays, and it’s a practice we share universally, and it goes all the way back to Adam and Eve walking and talking with God in the garden. It’s in a sense written on our human code, according to Romans. This is true for people of every walk of life and every belief system.

Most of us as children were taught to close our eyes when we pray. Our Salt and Light mission makes it appropriate to open our eyes as we pray, to see the hurting and hungry. To pray not only in holy quiet places, but in common and loud marketplaces of commerce.

We’ve been reminded of this with our Salt and Light stories and sermons. We are reminded this time of year to “remember those less fortunate”, those who might be crying out to God. As those who follow Christ, remembering those less fortunate is something we should do on a daily basis and not just a certain time of the year.

To put another twist on this we have a privilege and even a challenge to lift the “less fortunate” up to the Father in prayer. Daryl and Kendall presented Kendall’s Salt & Light story during the Sunday sermon and challenged us to pray that the Lord might lead us to individuals who have financial difficulties, but also to lead us to those who are searching for a closer walk with God.

Prayer is a very powerful tool we have at our disposal.  Please allow me to share with you a couple of thought from a devotional I recently had that may encourage us see how fortunate we are and how others also need to know this.

Jesus starts out Matthew 6:5 saying, “when you pray”. He doesn’t say, “if you pray”, but “when you pray”. We believe Christian prayer sounds different than the prayers offered within other belief systems, and it all starts with the One we pray to.  To the believer, God is our heavenly Father.  Not someone out there we are trying to appease or someone we hope hears us.

We know him because we have been born of him and he has sent his Spirit into our hearts.  We call him Abba, Father, and that changes everything about our prayer. It makes it personal.  We are praying to the one who loves and cares for us.  What was once maybe nothing more than a religious ritual to us or something we did to be noticed by others is now an intimate conversation with our Father.  We know our Father cares for us.  He is interested and concerned and already has his ear in our direction.  We don’t have to beg and plead to get his attention.  That’s what the pagans do.  But you don’t pray like the pagans do, because you know that he “knows what you need before you ask him”.

So in all of the hustle and bustle of this holiday season let’s not forget the less fortunate and the responsibility we have of holding them up before the Father.  Just a couple of weeks ago we had 3 ladies respond with 2 asking for prayers for recent health issues, both Patti Smith and Amber Thompson.  Joining them was Jennifer Bodin asking to be a part of our fellowship, but I’m sure she would want us also to pray for her health situation. Pray for their healing and that their walk with the Lord will grow and flourish.  Pray also for the Lord’s leading our walk and opening our eyes to those in need of him.

Enjoy your time with family this coming week, but remember and pray for the ones Jesus always included, the poor in spirit and the mournful, the meek and the hungry, for they too shall be filled.

Have a Merry Christmas!