Elder's Prayer - May 13, 2018
Please find below the notes from the Elder's Prayer this past Sunday.
God had blessed me with a wonderful praying mother aptly named Mary and a loving spouse Carol who regularly intercedes that God would help me overcome sin, that I would remain humble and stand approved before God. I stand before you by the grace of God, empowered by the Holy Spirit and the prayers of these two women in my life.
Such a story is not unique to me, in the body of Christ. God had raised many women whose unrelenting fervor for the Lord and unceasing prayers, brought forth mighty men of God and extended His kingdom far and wide.
Elizabeth Newton had passed away when John was just 7 years old. But within those formative years, she taught him to honor the Bible and turn to it for spiritual knowledge and strength. She taught him the good news of the gospel, that salvation is by grace through faith in Christ Jesus. She displayed a sweet submission to God’s will and a deep piety, treasuring and obeying God’s every word. One of Newton’s biographers observed, “The spiritual lessons the boy had learned at his mother’s knee were never forgotten. They become the foundation for Newton’s eventual conversion and Christian commitment. We cannot understand this great man apart from his godly mother.”
Betsy Moody did not grow up poor. She was from one of the stalwart families in New England, married to a successful businessman. But this man Edwin Moody brought the family down due to his sinful habits and promptly died when Betsy was pregnant with twins and had 7 other children. One of the children was Dwight Lyman Moody who was 4 years old when his dad died. Betsy was a living example of Proverbs 31 woman in spite of losing everything, fighting to keep her kids with her when cruel creditors wanted to separate the family and had to learn to work with her hands as an adult.
Her beaten up yet unwavering simple faith in God made her teach her children from the only book in the house – a Bible. When D.L. Moody spoke at her funeral, on behalf of his siblings, he made this statement When everything went against her, this was her stay, quoting his mother he said, “My trust is in God. My trust is in God”.
I can go on and talk forever about Amelia Hudson Taylor and many more godly mothers or great women of God like Corrie Ten Boom, Fanny Crosby, Elizabeth Elliot and many more.
All of these women were weak and frail humans like you and I. They had trials and prodigal sons. Some of them had self-serving husbands. Yet their strong faith in God set them all apart from the rest of the breed. They realized and confessed that they were weak but YAHWEH is strong, so they clung to God.
If God is going to raise many men and women who are going to make a difference for Christ from Summit Woods, please know my sisters, that His plan includes you. Your godly legacy does not have to be defined by your past, it could be rewritten in the present by your obedience to Christ now.
May your husband and may your children raise up and say, “blessed are you - Many women have done excellently, but you surpass them all. Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. And that is you.” (Proverbs 31:28-30)
Heavenly Father, thank you for our mothers. I pray for all of the women at Summit Woods who are striving to lead a godly life in Christ Jesus.
Holy Spirit of the living God, please teach them and us to do your will for you are our God and lead us on the level ground (Psalm 143:10), in the everlasting way (Psalm 139:24).
Please encourage the tired mothers in our midst and speak peace to the faint-hearted. Please strengthen the weak. Please give them and us Christlike perspective of life and future.
Please help them and us not to grow weary in doing good (2 Thessalonians 3:13).
I pray that the gospel seeds that they are planting, by their teaching and exemplary lifestyle will yield 100-fold results for the glory of God.
Please help the fathers in our midst to serve their families well.
Father, this life is not about us, it is about you. We are your bond-servants. I surrender each family unit in Summit Woods into your hands. Use us as you see fit. We desire to be a flavor-filled salt and light that is not covered up, giving light to those around us, leading them unto Christ.
We pray this in the matchless name of our Savior, Lord Jesus Christ, Amen.