Go to Prayer
Everyone loves some kind of music. I happen to live with two musicians. They sing, play guitar, keyboards, drums, saxophone – you name it. I can’t even clap on beat, but I always enjoy hearing them.
When I was a little girl, my family sent me to Catholic boarding school, we weren’t Catholics, but they thought I belonged there. (Just curious – anyone else have the special blessing of CBS?) No? I’m so happy for you! When I was eight years old, in 4th grade, it was time to get ready for the Christmas pageant. The nun (I think it was Sister Dominic, not sure) took the whole class into the auditorium, sat at the piano and played a few notes of some carol and each child sang along. She sorted us into groups that I found out later were soprano, alto and bass or tenor. After it was my time to sing, she said, “Suzie, stand over there.” I kept waiting for other children to join my group and no one ever did. It turned out I sang so badly I wasn’t allowed to sing at all. And all little children love to sing, it never occurs to them that they “can’t sing.”
I was to play the triangle. Some of you remember them. Our song was The Little Drummer Boy and it went like this (you can laugh-I think I have gotten over it) . . . “Come, they told me, parumpumpumpum.” Ding Ding. That was me, the triangle. “The newborn King to see, parumpumpumpum.” Ding Ding. You can imagine what that did for my self-esteem. I was already the shyest person in the class. I was the one who got ‘demerits’ for group participation. Children could get merits on their Deportment Card (like a Report Card only regarding your behavior) or demerits for acting up. When all the children were playing kickball or jump rope, I would be by myself reading a book – and that got me demerits, seriously frowned upon.
Anyway, years later (I was about 16) I was with my dad, stepmother, a high school friend coming back from a trip and I told that story. I didn’t realize it, but afterward I was singing along with a song on the radio like you do. At the end of the song, my dad says, really droll, “You know, Sue, the nun was right.” Embarrassed all over again. My own father!
By the way, my husband who can sing very well, told me when I became a Christian over 25 years ago and shared that story, that the Lord gave us our voices to praise Him and whatever it sounds like to us, it is beautiful to Him, so we should sing. That was really encouraging, because I was hyper-sensitive by then and afraid to sing at all.
So that’s my music history. But I love to listen and you might be surprised that the kind of music I like best is bluegrass, especially bluegrass gospel. It got started with the movie O Brother Where Art Thou. If you haven’t seen it, rent it, or watch it again anyway if you have. Fabulous music, very soulful, and George Clooney is funny besides just easy to look at.
And the reason I like bluegrass music is it is the history of our country. You hear about railroads, miners, farmers, hard-working regular folks, Bible-believing grandparents, things like that. The musicians are excellent, the instruments are clear-sounding. The songs are typically happy and upbeat. But the best thing is, almost exclusively, the singers are Christians. They sing about the Lord and heaven and prayer just as naturally as they speak. A couple times a week in fact on my channel, Wednesday night and Sunday morning, they have 6 hours straight of just gospel music. You would like it.
So, I listen on the way to work, I live about 5 mins south of here and work about 5 mins north. But at the beginning of this year, I decided to instead of listening to the music in the car in the morning to turn it off, pray and listen to the Lord. And I did pray, not expecting to hear an answer immediately, but as the Scripture says, Be still and know He is God.
We have a small family business, just my husband and myself, and like all of the economy, expenses had risen and business had been off in the 2008-2009 recession. So I was considering our finances one day, and I was praying in my car when I wasn’t listening to music. The Lord was prompting me to do something crazy. I got to work and made some calls to see if anyone we paid monthly would be willing to adjust their charges. Which sounds kind of impossible – no one lowers their rates, they raise them. I actually made 3 calls and each one I talked to agreed to reduce our expenses – our rent by 1/3 – back to what we paid 14 yrs earlier, storage by 50% – we have to keep records for 7 years so we have loads of document to store – we even got an indoor place with air conditioning, and our messenger service reduced us by 75% – a company we have done business with for 20 years dropped us back to our rate from 25 years ago! In fact, the man who answered the phone had owned the company, sold it and was back working there. He remembered us from 20 years earlier. I was stunned – I was rejoicing all day! I’m still rejoicing!
And here is the really amazing part, as it turned out, the next month we had 2 new, large expenses that equaled to the dollar, what we had saved – exactly $900, so that proves also that God is perfect at math, He is perfect at everything, of course. I knew those expenses were coming, but I wasn’t thinking about it at the time.
With the Lord and prayer – impossible things can be possible! So I encourage you to bring that insurmountable thing in your life to the Lord. Our pastor had been teaching us just a few weeks earlier that when you have an obstacle in your life, one of the things you do is listen to God and then let Him lead. He was talking about when the Israelites needed to cross the Jordan with the Ark of the Covenant, the most holy Presence of God on earth. It was at flood stage, but in faith, they listened to the Lord, followed His command and stepped in. As soon as they took that step, the waters parted and they walked through on dry land. Impossible? . . . not with our God.
Jesus said with faith the size of a mustard seed, we can move mountains. And if you don’t have that mountain-moving faith right now, take it straight to the Lord, He would love to hear you pray for that impossible thing. We can stop to pray together right now, okay?
Father in heaven, thank You for your incredible provision and unlimited creativity. Thank You that You do the unthinkable when we least expect it. Why are we so surprised at Your amazing grace? Help us to listen for Your voice and to follow when You speak. Help us to be faithful in prayer as You are faithful in mercy and grace. We give You the glory for Your mighty answers to prayer, In Jesus Name, Amen
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