Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Be Careful What You Pray For!

by Ruth Harms Calkin

You know, Lord, how I serve you
With great emotional fervor
In the limelight.
You know how eagerly I speak for you
At a women's club.
You know how I effervesce when I promote
A fellowship group.
You know my genuine enthusiasm
At a Bible study.
But how would I react, I wonder
If you pointed to a basin of water
And asked me to wash the calloused feet
Of a bent and wrinkled old woman
Day after day
Month after month
In a room where nobody saw
And nobody knew.
Lately as I pray for my children, I've been particularly burdened to pray for their humility. I know they're kids and humility is a stretch. But my personal struggles with the beast of pride and the falls that resulted have left an indelible scar that I do not want my children to bear in their own lives. Put simply, I would much rather they humble themselves than for God to be forced to humble them!
Well, as they say, "Be careful what you pray for!" As so often is the case, God turned the tables on me. After a few days of earnestly pleading for my children in this area and asking Him to give them a sincere desire to seek His glory rather than their own, God asked me a question. "Ann-Marie, are you modeling humility for your children?"
AWWWW, nuts!!! I was really hopeful He was just going to take care of this one for me. You know, "let go and let God!" I was humbly admitting that I couldn't change their hearts! And, after 14 years of motherhood, I knew no amount of me talking would change anything. So I was taking it to the One who can get through to them and can change their hearts. But with all these years under my belt, I should have also known that He always uses our relationships with our children to teach us about our relationship with Him.
In the weeks that have followed, I have taken an honest and difficult look at myself. Wow! All I can say is, "Thank you, Father!" Thank you for your mercy and your love in spite of my prideful ways. He daily gives me so many opportunities to model humility and true servanthood and I'm ashamed to say that MANY times I have literally turned my nose up in response. I've even joked that everyone can't be a servant or there would be no one to serve. OUCH!
I'm happy to report that my prayers for my children have changed. I now ask God to change me and my heart so that I can model for my children humility and true servanthood. And just like I am powerless to change my boys' hearts, I am powerless to change my own. But PRAISE THE LORD, He is able!!!
Remember...Be Careful What You Pray For!!
P.S. Leave a comment and you could win a prize!!! I just finished reading a great book by Christian speaker and author, Lysa TerKeurst entitled, Becoming More Than A Good Bible Study Girl. I couldn't put it down! In fact, I loved it so much I want to give away a copy. So leave a comment and become a follower of the blog and I'll pick one random person to win her own copy of the book. Be sure and leave your name and a way for me to contact you.
Have a blessed one...


Crystal said...

Your blogs have been a blessing to me. I really enjoy reading them. You are always talking about something that I am struggling with myself. Thank you so much. You are a true blessing from God, and a woman who is after God's own heart. I admire that about you. Again, Thank you so much.
Much Love,
Crystal Scott

rubyak2009 said...

Dear Ann-Marie,
What a wonderful topic. We were humbled by Brother Hector the last time we were at his colonia. He prayed over our feet and asked God to bless our feet in our journey to serve Him. Wow, that was eye-opening for me. So many times we get caught up in the outside appearances and forget that God just wants us to serve Him humbly. All the other things are just window dressing. Thank you for your humble reminder today.
Love, Cheri Raduenz

Momof5 said...

Parenting in god's eyes always brings me back to Deut 11: 18-21. It's saying not just sometimes, but always...... Love your blog! God bless.

eliza said...

Thank you for always being willing to share Ann-Marie! I am always touched by your words of wisdom and thought provoking questions. ¡Gracias por todo!


champshire said...

Thanks for the reminder that we can't expect someone else to do what we are not doing and modeling ourselves. And thanks for the encouragement to keep praying for my kids!
And now that I am done with youth group for the summer, I finally have time to read a good book!

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