Mothers for Prodigals

Sunday, May 15, 2016

A Man of Prayer


The real “heroes” of the world 
are the men who take the time 
to make a difference 
in the life of a child.
(from Pop’s funeral bulletin)

H - humble
E - earnest
   R - righteous
  O - obedient

In the morning, Lord, you hear my voice;
    in the morning I lay my requests before you
    and wait expectantly. Psalm 5:3 (NIV)

I knew a man who prayed. Most likely you know someone who prays. Possibly you even pray. It’s easy, right? Say a few words of thanks for blessings. Offer a couple of praises to a Supreme Being. Then plead for well-being on behalf of a friend or family member. Because remember—we told them we’d pray for them, casually maybe, but we said it. Do we follow through? I mean, do we really pray for them?

I repeat. I knew a man who prayed. Daily down on his knees for hours at a time, beginning at night and continuing into morning, he prayed. He lifted up, actually recited, over four thousand names to his Heavenly Father. Those names consisted of his family, friends, and the entire staff and student population of the high school where his grandson attended. Many, and I mean a whole lot, of those named considered him their hero. He, on the other hand, literally and personally called each one of them his hero. And everyone knew him as “Pop”.

Whether football games, practices, or FCA (Fellowship of Christian Athletes) morning worship, Pop showed up to the high school to support his grandson and fellow students. He attended a tremendous amount of school events, personally connecting with teens and adults. When he returned home, his nighttime ritual of prayer included their names and the names of many others he never even met. Numerous names belonged to troubled teens. Pop desired to place each name in the care of our loving Heavenly Father at the start of the day, every single dayThe fact that he included me and my ministry of “mothers for prodigals” blesses my heart. 

How does one go from casually throwing out names in quick breath prayers to falling down in humility with pleas of concern for people? By earnestly seeking a righteous God and believing He has the power to overcome life’s situations. Praying in this way provides sweet fellowship with a loving God and builds faith in the God of the impossible. This type of prayer obediently follows the example of the God-man who walked on earth regularly praying. 

I know this God-man who continually prayed to His Heavenly Father. He is my personal Lord and Savior. He was born to save the world and died on a cross, carrying the sins of the world. After three days, He arose in victory over sin and death. He offers His very power through the Holy Spirit to those that believe in Him. His name is Jesus the Messiah or Christ.

Scripture gives examples of Jesus’ prayer life (Luke 6:12, Mark 14:32, Matthew 26:36, Luke 22:39-40). He often went away alone to pray. He taught His disciples how to pray (Matthew 6:9-13). He prayed for them and us, you and me (John 17). And Pop knew this God-man of prayer named Jesus. 

Because of Jesus, Pop was clothed in righteousness. Because of Jesus, Pop walked in obedience. Like Jesus, Pop lived a humble life. Like Jesus, Pop prayed earnestly. Like Jesus, Pop loved people. And like Jesus, he desired for all people to be saved. 

The front cover of Pop’s funeral bulletin included the words of the apostle Paul from the second book of Timothy. It says, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith” (4:7). While living, Pop responded to this Scripture verse saying, “My prayer is that I can say the same thing.”

What a hero. But this hero would be the first one to tell you about the greatest Hero of all—Jesus Christ. Do you know Him? If you do, keep your relationship with Him fresh and alive through daily prayer and reading His Word. If you aren’t sure about Him, simply get on your knees in humble prayer, searching with your whole heart for the One who created you and died to redeemed you. He is the Almighty God, the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. AND HE LOVES YOU.

The Lord has heard my cry for mercy;
    the Lord accepts my prayer. Psalm 6:9 (NIV)

The Lord is far from the wicked,
    but he hears the prayer of the righteous. Proverbs 15:29 (NIV)

If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.” Matthew 21:22 (NIV)

Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. James 5:16 (NIV)

It was at this time that He went off to the mountain to pray, and He spent the whole night in prayer to God. Luke 6:12 (NASB)

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. Philippians 4:6 (NIV)

And when he had taken it, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb. Each one had a harp and they were holding golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of God’s people. Revelation 5:8 (NIV)

I can only imagine what Pop sees now……


  1. What a great example of a prayer warrior!

  2. Your dad gave you an awesome blessing. I was just asked today about my prayer life. It's more valuable than water. You daddy would be so very proud of you Debbie. You have also stayed the course, as he did.