Archive for June, 2010

Childlike Prayers

When Wayne and I chose to have a personal relationship with God, our children were young. 

We immediately began teaching them about God and how important it was to talk with Him about everything.

If it was important to us, then it was important to Him.

Every night we would pray together as they were about to get into bed for the night.  Their bedtime was 8:30 p.m. which gave us some adult conversation time without interruption.

We also taught them that God was always available to listen so they could pray whenever they wanted.

We prayed for just about anything, friends, animals, bikes.  The list was endless.

When we heard an ambulance, we knew somebody was hurt so we prayed that God would touch them.

One day our children were staying with a friend when they heard an ambulance.  Immediately, they all prayed for the person who needed medical help.

Some months later that friend fell off a ladder and broke his leg.  It was a severe break and he had to be transported to the hospital in an ambulance.  He said as the ambulance worked its way through traffic with its siren blaring, he lay in the back scared and in pain.  He remembered our children’s prayers for someone they didn’t even know and whispered his own prayer that someone would pray for him.

When our girls attended school, they rode to school on a bus, or, as they called it, “The Big Cheese.” Our son was only about three, but wanted to go to school with them.  For some reason, I told him his legs were not long enough to get on the bus and when they were, he could go to school.

From then on, he asked God every day to let his legs grow long enough to get on the bus. Now at this time, he had short little legs about two thirds the length needed to be proportionate with the rest of his body.

It didn’t matter who was visiting and sharing a meal with us, He asked to say the blessing. Imagine their surprise when he said, “Lord, Bless this food and heal us, and let my legs grow long enough to get on the bus.”

When our son was old enough for school, our house was up for sale. It seemed it would never sell. All summer we waited. When it was Fall and the school year started, he climbed on the bus and rode to school.

Three months later, our house sold and we moved within walking distance to his new school. We always said it was so his prayer could be answered that the sale of our house was delayed.

Just so you know that God is able to do exceeding abundantly beyond all that we ask or think … (Eph. 3:20 NAS), our son is now 6’3” with legs that are much longer Wayne’s or mine.

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Archie Dennis

Archie Dennis

            The Bible verse I memorized in Vacation Bible School, Psalms 19:14 (KJV)“Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength, and my redeemer,” I heard for the second time when Archie Dennis stood before the congregation of Bayview Heights Baptist Church and sang the Bible verse he had set to music.  Sometimes, I sing it today.

Archie visited our church over thirty years ago now.  He sat on the front row as we worshiped.  When there was a lull he began to sing, “Amen.”  The more he sang the more the congregation joined in until he walked up to take charge of the service.

He came as a singer, but he preached in a way that revealed new things from scriptures I had read many times.

            He talked about working with a gospel singer.  He was 45 minutes late for a meeting with her one day.  She told him that he had just stolen 45 minutes of her life and there was no way he could ever return it to her.  It made a lasting impression on me.  Not that I have been on time to every meeting, but I have tried to be mindful of keeping others waiting.

            He preached from Exodus 8 about the plague of the frogs.  Archie went into great detail about how the frogs covered the land.  They were in the bed, in the oven, in the cooking pots, in the well, in their pockets … everywhere.  Pharaoh sent for Moses and told him he would agree to his demands and let the people go sacrifice to the Lord if Moses would ask God to remove the frogs.  Moses said that Pharaoh could decide when he wanted Moses to ask that they be removed.  Pharaoh said, “Tomorrow.”

Archie pointed out that if he was living with frogs everywhere, he would have said, “Immediately.”

He went on to relate this was the way some people live with sin.  Get rid of it in your life now!  Don’t live with it planning to get rid of it later.

I was talking with a young man one day who wasn’t attending church or living the life of a committed Christian.  He proclaimed that the church where he grew up was a denomination that was “true” and when he went back to church, it would be to that denomination.

When, I thought.  Why wouldn’t he want to live the life of a Christian now if he knows it is the true way?

Archie Dennis passed away on October 26, 2001.  What he taught lives on in the lives of the thousands of people worldwide who heard him sing and preach.  Most certainly in mine.

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