Grove, Oklahoma, US
Via ASSIST News Service

“Never stop praying, especially for others. Always pray by the power of the Spirit. Stay alert and keep praying for God’s people” - Ephesians 6:18 (CEV).

Praying for others

PICTURE: Pedro Lima/Unsplash.

Waiting to checkout at the grocery store recently, I noticed an older woman - probably in her 80s - in line behind me. Leaning on her cart, she was nursing what I assumed was a broken wrist. She looked up to see me watching her. I smiled. She acknowledged mine with one of her own.

Lifting up her wrist, she said, “I did something silly for an old woman. I wasn’t paying attention and caught my foot on a loose brick. I stumbled, fell and landed on my right arm. It’s not broken, just severely cracked. I’m hoping to avoid surgery. Please pray for me.”

“I will,” I replied, acknowledging her request. After paying for my groceries, I gave her a hug.

As I drove home, I thought about the woman I’d encountered. I don’t believe in coincidences. Somehow, she knew I was a praying woman. Maybe it was the cross I wear around my neck.

But, then, I remembered I’d forgotten to ask her name. However, I knew it didn’t matter. God knew. I knew.

During the rest of the day and through the next, when God brought her wrinkled, but serene face to mind, I lifted her up in prayer. That was on a Thursday and Friday. Saturday, I was busy and forgot.

On Sunday after church, I had lunch with a friend. Leaving the restaurant, I was ready to put my car in reverse, when I noticed a vehicle pull up and park behind me. At first, I was frustrated. Then I noticed the driver had walked around the car to open the passenger door.

“Patience,” I told myself. “It’s probably someone elderly or handicapped person the driver is dropping off before parking.”

As the passenger shuffled by my car window, I smiled. It was nothing more than a God-appointed encounter with the same woman I’d met at the grocery store three days earlier.

Pushing the button to lower my window, I grabbed her attention with the words, “Do you remember me?”

“Yes,” she replied. “Are you still praying for me?”

“Yes, I am,” I said, “but I forgot to ask your name.”

“It’s Lillie.”

“That was my grandmother’s name,” I exclaimed.

Stunned by this encounter and learning the woman’s name matched my grandmother’s left me in awe of our mighty God. It was a blessing lingering through the day and a reminder to continue praying for Lillie.

While I may never see Lillie again - at least this side of Heaven - I have no doubt God brought us together. Maybe, it’s His way of revealing Himself to two souls in need of encouragement.

I came across this quote on prayer by Pastor EM Bounds: “Prayer should not be regarded as a duty which must be performed, but rather as a privilege to be enjoyed, a rare delight that is always revealing some new beauty.”

Prayer is a privilege. It brings us into the presence of our Heavenly Father, a father who loves us so much He sacrificed His Son for us.

As Christians, we’ve all been adopted into His family. When a “family member” asks for prayer, consider it a privilege—even if they’re a stranger.

It’s a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer.