She sat regally propped up with pillows, waiting for me. She knew it was rest time and I would soon appear. I opened the door slowly and peered around it, seeing her big smile and open arms. As fast as my four-year-old legs could cross a room, I crawled up into her bed, and felt her warm hug envelope me. I snuggled into her as she stroked my white-blond hair. We talked about things I thought were important, and she told me Bible stories. I shortly fell asleep with my head tucked into her side. Our soothing visits were full of love for me. As the days melted into weeks and then into months, her voice became weaker, and I could feel her bones as I cuddled up next to her. One day my parents forbid me from entering her room. Because I was precocious, they watched me closely. They knew how much I loved her and I would try to go into her room.
My parents sat me down to explain that my beautiful grandmother was very sick and would not get better. Tears flooded my eyes as I realized there would be no more snuggles, secrets to share, or Bible stories. I felt so lost. At my age, grandmothers were supposed to live forever. Regrettably, it wasn’t long before she succumbed to cancer.
Decades have passed since that time, and one day while praying, I asked the Lord who prayed for my salvation. Quickly the answer came with my grandmother’s name. I boldly asked “When?” and the word “Daily” became the answer. Tears drifted down my cheeks remembering all the fond memories of being with her. Even now as I write these words, tears streak my face. She loved the Lord. When I was with her, she never failed to mention Jesus or thank Him for the blessings He brought to her day. Her smile was joy-filled and radiant; kindness oozed from her; and I felt her unconditional love deep within me. I was too young to understand why she was this way, until I accepted Jesus and realized it was from her relationship with Him.
When my children and grandchildren were born, my husband and I followed the example of my grandmother. When they were younger, we often snuggled with them, talked about Jesus, and read them Bible stories. Before they closed their eyes at night, we prayed over them. When I look back at my old journals, the main theme was salvation for my children and grandchildren. I am so grateful that my entire family knows the Lord. I have been so blessed to see my prayers come to fruition.
Many of you are praying for those you love who do not know Jesus as Lord and Savior. Let me encourage you, the Lord hears those prayers. He also longs for them to know Him in a personal way. It took me years to find Him, but those prayers remained in the heavenly realm. “The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective” (James 5:16 NIV). His love, mercy, and grace extends to all. I am thankful He weeps with us as we weep for our unsaved loved ones and friends. I know “(God) desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge and recognition of the [divine] truth” (1 Timothy 2:4 AMP).
I am thankful my grandmother was an example in my life of the importance of prayer and thanksgiving. As she slipped into the arms of Jesus, she was confident that the Lord would answer her prayers for me. At one time, I prayed for two of my relatives to come to salvation, only to see things get worse. Yet, many years later they now are walking with the Lord. God answered my prayers. Don’t give up on your prayers even when much time has passed, and you think nothing is happening. We may never witness the answers to our prayers. But Scripture reminds us, “Because he bends down to listen, I will pray as long as I have breath!” (Psalm 116:2 NLT) and,“Don’t worry about anything, but in all your prayers ask God for what you need, always asking him with a thankful heart” (Philippians 4:6 GNT).
Lord, I pray my loved ones _________________ come to know you in a personal way. Lord, please save them, and help me stay the course in prayer even when I think it’s not possible. Thank you for telling me, “Nothing is impossible with You.” I hold that promise in my heart and offer my prayers and gratitude to You. Thank You Lord. Amen.