My Prayer Today – Through a Different Lens

Matthew 6:9-13 (NIV)

This, then, is how you should pray…

Only a week ago, I was on safari in Kenya. We all woke up early in the morning to go watch the sunrise over the Masai Mara. DSC_8788We came upon all sorts of animals grazing the fields of the Mara in the early morning.  They all faced east and appeared to be watching the sunrise with anticipation along with us humans.  DSC_8784 (1)DSC_8799 DSC_8826 (1)I was amazed.

Our Father who art in Heaven…

My family and I sat silently in our jeep and watched God paint the earth with golden colors as the sun came up. I became overwhelmed with emotion. In the silence of the sunrise, all of creation seemed to shout out God’s presence.DSC_8802Hollowed be thy name…DSC_9630 (1)

DSC_8884The sun came up and presented us an amazing day.DSC_9257

DSC_8932DSC_9437DSC_9412DSC_9344DSC_8974Safari ended, and so did the Africa trip. It took us 38 hours to fly home. We arrived home last Sunday night, and Monday morning, I went back to work. Sometimes, when I come home from trips, it’s hard to jump back into normal life between the jet lag and the extra work to catch up on.

Your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven…

But God painted my soul with beautiful pictures from this trip that I have been able to reflect upon.DSC_8092 It’s kept a smile on my face this week, and a hope in my heart for what is to come. Maybe in some small way, I felt like I got a picture of Heaven while in Kenya.

It’s not just in the sunrise on the Mara either.

One picture I won’t forget is Nanu and my daughter Isabel together. Nanu is a little tiny Maasai girl that Isabel decided to sponsor last year. In some beautifully, ordained way, Nanu and Isabel were meant to be friends. Her sponsorship with Nanu provided Nanu a necessary surgery so she could be a healthy and whole little girl. The surgery was done this last year, and Nanu is thriving.

Give us this our daily bread…

Nanu was beyond shy when Isabel first met her, and she cried and hid behind her mother. However, Isabel gave me a little smile and wink, and she said quietly, “Mom, I got this one.”

I watched in amazement as my daughter became the “child whisperer.” Slowly, patiently, quietly, tenderly, Isabel drew Nanu in. No words necessary.

Isabel sat quietly nearby until Nanu walked into her arms. Within 2 hours Nanu was asleep in her arms.photoBy day two, this had happened.

DSC_8166DSC_8385God does not force His presence upon us. He lets us walk into His presence when we are ready to receive His grace.

DSC_8197 (2)And forgive us our debts…

Steve and I were humbled, recognizing that our youngest daughter was used by God for such a time as this..

As we also have forgiven our debtors…

How much better will Heaven be than this?

And lead us not into temptation…

I want to remember these images from this last trip and all my trips. From the sunrise over the Mara, when I sat amongst His creation, to the smile of Nanu after a couple of days with Isabel, to the tears of my own sponsored child, Hannah in the final goodbyes that makes me realize how significant we are to her. DSC_8464 (1)These moments impact my heart so deeply. I don’t want the busy schedule, the many emails or all the consumption of America and my own life, to drown out the chance to experience God’s presence every day, right here at home.

But deliver us from the evil one. Amen.

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Sandra Jones Counseling

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