On Mondays, we fast and pray for the Lord to do a work in our generation: for Him to move mountains, raise up men to walk into relationships, soften women to allow God to work in our hearts, and to bring the gift of marriage for those who desire it.
Last week we paused the regular programming to share in the celebration of Emily’s wedding and to remember that God does answer our prayers. One of the FastPray writers whose name starts with an “A” and isn’t Anna, sent me a picture of a guest at the wedding, so I can only imagine that Emily looked beautiful and was beaming from the joy of the moment. Every now and again we hear from individuals in the FastPray community about how God has answered their prayers for marriage (the engagement ring pictures are amazing). It’s always encouraging to hear and see how God is working in the hearts and lives of others through our Monday prayers (and possibly a few other days of the week too).
Remember the story of Joshua, the one in the Bible, who had just taken over leading the Israelites on their double-digit, “Are we ever going to arrive?” journey to the Promised Land, when the entire clan arrives at the Jordan River? They camped for three days on the banks of the Jordan, I’m guessing to build suspense and wonder about how they were going to get to the other side. Now the Israelites had done this whole water crossing thing before when they were leaving Egypt and God parted the Red Sea, but that was 40 years earlier and under Moses’ leadership. An entire generation had died during their time in the desert. I’m sure the story was passed down through the generations, but might have gotten watered down (HA!) through the years and perhaps the full impact of the miracle was lost in the 40 years of desert wandering. So there they sat on the banks, waiting and wondering if this new leader, Joshua, was really taking them the correct way.
God does come through for the Israelites once again and parts the waters, allowing them to pass through on dry ground. Imagine 2 million people, a goat or two, and maybe a cart of some sort walking through the parted river. Wouldn’t you want an aerial traffic helicopter report on that one? When they finally make it to the other side, God instructs Joshua to send representatives into the middle of river bed and collect 12 rocks. I’m guessing they didn’t pick small ones, like I would have done.
In Joshua 4:6 – 7, we are told why these rocks were collected.
“In the future, when your children ask you, ‘What do these stones mean?’ tell them that the flow of the Jordan was cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord. When it crossed the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. These stones are to be a memorial to the people of Israel forever.”
The Israelites were instructed to build a memorial so that everyone would remember what the Lord God had done in bringing them to the Promised Land. God knows we need to be reminded about the good and miraculous things He’s done in our lives and in the lives of others around us. What triggers memories of God’s goodness in your life? Do you have a rock pile memorial?
If you are anything like me, it can feel as though you are wandering in a desert wasteland sometimes. The current drought situation in the U.S. holds nothing to your date-drought. Or perhaps your prayers for a new job or restored health have left you wondering if God is really hearing you and if your situation will ever change. What can you hang your helmet of salvation (Eph. 6:17) on as point of remembrance for the time God came through for you?
Last week we celebrated with Emily and others in the FastPray community over the answered prayers for mates and marriage. Be encouraged this week as you pray that God does answer prayers! Reflect on your own journey and ask God to remind you of the times He’s answered prayers or miraculously brought you across a seemingly impassable river. Hang your hat on these moments and know that God is working all things for your good (Rom. 8:28), He really does hear you and love you!
Be strong, and let your heart take courage, all you who wait for the LORD! Ps. 31:24