PRAYERS IN THE POOP....sorry
Last Weekend: My day began innocent enough, taking my daughter to the National Mill Dog Rescue to volunteer, to nurture her passions and to be a driver. After a few minutes of standing around in support of Victoria, I was instructed by a very energetic leader at the Dog Rescue center to clean the cages. OK, no big deal, I already smelled like dog from head to toe, but, ooohhhh, she wanted me to get into the cages where the dogs go to the bathroom and clean with a towel and pressure washer. Thank God someone else was doing the "picking up", but now I was doing the clean it off and wipe it down part. Some cages were OK, some, well, not so much.
Unlikely Place to Pray: While going from cage to cage, I did have more and more compassion on the dogs. They are taken from puppy mills where they were neglected, abused and caged in terrible conditions. They end up with health and social issues, which can be evidenced by the way they react to the change in environment, food, meds and human interaction. The cages sometimes tell the story, enough said, right... At this point, the smell was giving me a head ache, I needed a Mountain Dew and fresh air, which helped some, but after entering the cages again, I felt led to pray. Pray for the dogs, I think not, I didn't have that much compassion for them, they are dogs, after all. But, to pray for the humans. I just asked the Spirit of God to pray through me, so I prayed for every human who would ever enter that cage, and the leaders of the organization and the volunteers to work so hard. Then I began to pray for my daughters who were leaving to go to another country that weekend, for a mission trip no doubt. Then, I prayed for my wife and daughter who were there with me. I prayed for land to move my family to so we could have more freedom to have animals and such, then I just prayed for random things that came to me. In the end, I prayed, worked hard with excellence and came out smelling...well, still like dog.
Pray Everywhere: R.A. Torrey wrote a little book called "How to Pray". He says that "...prayer...is the richest fulfillment in the Christian life". He shares about how Jesus prayed in the morning, during the nights sometimes and before a crisis. He also prayed after a crisis resulted in a victory, before or during times of busyness and before and during times of temptation. The idea of "Abiding in Christ" that Paul also wrote about in the New Testament leads us to believe there really isn't anywhere or anytime when prayer is not appropriate, or even necessary. Torrey begins his book saying, "you have not because you ask not" then goes on to share many reasons why prayer is important. I would add that my experience has been that God wants to give, bless, protect, comfort, equip and guide us in every circumstance, according to his Word. He wants us to pray continually, constantly, sleeplessly, passionately and directly to Him and only Him through the Name of Jesus and to do it in Faith. When we make this our practice, like breathing, we begin to realize, there is no where too stinky, too trivial and too obscure to approach our King in Heaven with prayers and petitions, with thanksgiving and to see miracles take place right before our eyes.
Pray, just Pray....