Items For Prayer And Praise
By Lois J. Stucky
It is heartwarming to see in the front window of homes here and there in our city a square sign that says in bold letters, “Block Mother.” It tells you that here lives someone who cares about the children of the neighborhood. She is willing to keep a watchful, concerned eye for any indication of danger to children. She is willing to be available to help if some child needs a place beside home to dart into for safety.
How wonderful it would be if God could look down and see with His discerning eye that many homes bear a sign, “Spiritual Block Parents.” Here would live someone with a spiritual eye to see and a heart to care that neighborhood children are being stalked by a danger they do not suspect. It is as though the child encounters a wolf in sheep’s clothing. The child trusts and enjoys, until with a snarl and a snap, a hopeless grip is upon another unsuspecting victim.
You may be a parent whose hands are already full with a family of young children. You probably have neighborhood children dashing in and out of house and yard with your own. Can you take the time to show interest in these children, too, perhaps to inquire whether they attend Sunday School and encourage them to do so, or to go with your family? Could you send home with them a Christmas storybook or tracts? Do you ever invite them to a meal followed by family devotions? Perhaps you could open your home to a child evangelism class or serve as a teacher for one, or in some way lead them to Christ by God’s grace and enabling.
You may be a parent whose “nest” is now empty. The children are grown up and gone from home. You are likely a grandparent also, with concerns about grandchildren. You have good opportunity to use some of your time for praying for the neighborhood children. Let it extend beyond that to children of your city, your nation and the world. If a young newsboy calls at your door, be ready with a tract, or lead him to Christ on your doorstep.
You may be a single person whose empty arms long for the mother-joy or father-joy of cradling your own little one close to your heart. While you await God to grant your desire, seek Him for little ones near and far and cradle them in arms of prayer.
This week a Herald reader sent us a sample tract which she distributes for young people, alerting them to give their lives to Christ now and pointing out that even young people may not have plenty of time later for that, as they tend to think. The lady wrote: “Pray for our youth! I as a mother and grandmother and child of God, have a deep burden and concern for our youth and nation.…”
Sometimes when a news story breaks of some criminal who has committed multiple murders or has been involved in some similar inhuman crime, I think with a heart pang, “Who failed to win that one to Christ when he was a child and his heart was tender?” In your neighborhood are children with potential of becoming honorable Christian citizens and perhaps full-time workers for the Lord, or of becoming cruel criminals. Your prayers and your concern could make the difference!
A grandmotherly lady who lived near a high school prayed daily for the young people whom she saw going to and fro. She prayed in particular for several years for a student from a non-Christian home who was a ringleader. This lady’s prayers were answered when that young man came to Christ as Lord and Savior. Later he became the leader of a youth movement that has involved thousands of young people in a ministry that has brought many to Christ.
Too many children of this generation have no one to pray for them. hey are living in an age when the beginning of sorrows is in the earth, and when judgments of God are seen upon sinful nations. ithout repentance, far more frightful judgments will overtake mankind. Children suffer along with adults; perhaps they suffer more. They need to be gathered in to the flock of the loving Shepherd. They need His tender care now and for the future.
Already hundreds of thousands of the world’s children know unbelievable suffering. For some, the hard, filthy city sidewalk is their bed. For some the city dump is their pantry, and a very inadequate one at that. For some, the morning brings only another dismal day of pain of hunger and sickness. How can they smile? How can they live?
In America, where many children pout if their favorite food is not served or if they do not have the latest fad toy, or if they have to go to bed before a favorite TV program is over – we can hardly take in the simple deprived life that multitudes of children live. Might God help us to live more unselfishly and teach our children to do so also. Might we watch for opportunities to share our portion with those who have not. And let us pray for laborers to be sent to give them the Gospel.
The Mission Field of The Aged
Pray the Lord will also send laborers to the aged people. Many are housebound or are almost forgotten in a nursing home. They are on the brink of eternity! After they have lived almost their entire span of years in sin and unbelief, God will save them if they come to Him.
A Herald reader wrote to us: “We go for service to the nursing home. My prayer for the dear elderly people is that God’s Word will enter in and give light and understanding, and that God will “build His Church” there. Last month the brother who gave the Word presented it in such a clear manner. He spoke on the gift of salvation. Many raised their hands that they wanted to receive Jesus into their hearts, and then followed him in the sinner’s prayer. It was such a blessing to me, as I’ve been burdened along that very line.
“Then one night my prayer partner and I prayed for a man in her nursing home apparently dying and without God. The next day he was alert and she presented salvation to him, prayed for him, and he received Jesus! What a thrill that was!”
When the Apostle Paul wrote of the perils, deprivations and intense suffering he endured for Christ’s sake, he included “that which cometh upon me daily, the care of all the churches” (2 Cor. 11:28). It is not an easy thing to daily bear a care of souls. It is easiest to dismiss the thoughts from our mind and enjoy our ease and comfort. But it is those willing to bear a burden who are taking part with the Lord in the building of His Kingdom and it is those who will be able to give good account on the day of reckoning.
There are very serious threats in this hour to the homes and nations of the world. Satan is making an all-out effort. God needs each of us to do his or her part that the Divine purpose of ultimate victory be accomplished. Should not every Christian, however insignificant in life his or her station may seem to be, consider the thought that they are “come to the Kingdom for such a time as this”? (Esther 4:14). We are in the heavenly kingdom and we wield power with God, even power to help save a nation – if we will step into the responsibilities and privileges He so graciously extends to us. Let us not fail!