Wednesday, October 26, 2011

a guest post from my big sister

My sister said i could post this here.  Prayer is something that i feel God gently teaching me about these days & her post resonated with me.... Since i asked her to write it in the first place - i know anyone who reads here will appreciate it too. 


So many times in my young mom years i thought "if only i had a mentor! This can't be right!". I muddled through, made a lot of mistakes and now i'm an old mom, and i think I understand why older women don't reach out to teach younger women.

If they are like me, they see young, beautiful women doing a faithful, valiant job and figure maybe we don't know that much more. Maybe making mistakes is part of the process. And both of those things may be true! But as a mom to two teenagers, thirty eight and pregnant with number eight, maybe it's time for me to share at least the little bits and bobs i've learned. Maybe it will help another mom. Maybe my own daughters will one day marry and live far away from me. So, here goes.

My baby sister and I were talking the other day, on our iphones as i walked through Winner's waiting while my husband shopped and tried on clothes. She thought i should write the story of

"How Stephanie Learned To Pray"

I was probably 25 or 26, with a great husband and two or three little children, just starting to homeschool. And i noticed that while it was an easy thing for me to keep up my Bible reading, i was not understanding what I heard and read about prayer. I was reading books like Dutch Sheet's Intercessory Prayer, Listening Prayer by Leanne Payne, Can You Hear Me? By Brad Jersak and Cindy Jacob's prayer manual. I was also recording vocals to beautiful cds that were basically just prayers with background music.

I wanted to be faithful in prayer. I wanted to be fervent and effectual, surrounding my children with every good blessing, and most of all, setting an example to little people who were watching me so closely.

Here is the important part of the story. I asked around at my huge church and said "Who knows a lot about prayer?". One name came up several times. Esther Chua. So I found out who she was, introduced myself and asked her if she would teach me about prayer.

Young moms, it really is that simple! God had prepared Esther for my request and she graciously invited me to her house on a weeknight, and we spent three hours with a group of women, praying. Esther had a burden for southeast Asia, and that's what we would pray for. Every week, for over a year. Esther would share a little bit of information about missionaries, or politics or needs, and we took it to God in prayer. At the end, we would pray for each other. It was not a rushed, perfunctory prayer time. Didn't have a set ending time. But there, on the floor at Esther Chua's house, I learned to pray deeply about a matter, to allow silences to hear the Holy Spirit's prompting, to pray God's Word back to Him, claiming His promises. And to be unafraid to pray out in front of my wonderful, accepting sisters.

In those days we hardly ever went out. We had no money but we were also intentional about spending time together, to get bonded as a family and addicted to each other. But those hours I have never begrudged. Through a Titus Two woman, I learned what God wanted to teach me about prayer (and met other wonderful mentors who are still a blessing and encouragement though we are far apart now.)

I hope this is encouraging to some young moms out there- if you need Godly wisdom, God is already preparing a way for you to get it! You might have to step out a little too! If there are any older moms out there - is this something you could see yourself doing? Or has God taught you something else you burn to share? I challenge you to step out, too!


You can read more from Stephanie HERE. 


Lesley said...

I find it amazing that I had a friend in Junior High School named Jess who possessed *something* I liked. (A way of living that I admired, and yes...envied) I was on my own journey with God but didn't feel like I belonged to him. Fast forward a LONG time and I reconnected with this friend through Facebook. Through this reconnection, I began reading her blog and writing one of my own. One day, I noticed down one side of her blog that she had a link to her sister's blogs. I began reading those too. How much the Sloan sisters have taught me. How grateful I am for you all. That sounds strange (and just a little bit 'stalker-ish') but fear not. I'm just a Mama who lives far away who is becoming a different kind of Christian...I am changing in such a profound way. It's as if things that have been blurry are coming into focus.

So, posts like this are such an encouragement.

paige said...

aw, leslie, you're so sweet... i hope i'm becoming a different kind of a Christian every day as i grow too...


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