Grandma’s Prayer Closet

Some of you may have seen the movie “War Room”. While I’ve only seen clips, it looks terrific! The driving force is Miss Clara, an elderly woman who makes a huge impact through the use of her prayer closet. Its a story about intense, intentional prayer and its ability to sway a situation. I’ve noticed that many women (and this should apply to men as well), have been creating a prayer specific space. I think that’s a mighty fine thing as long as it gets used.

Could there be another way to have intense, very personal prayer life? Not that theoretical or impersonal stuff we occasionally get at church or the rapid machine gun prayer before supper, but those times when you really know that He’s really listening and you’re bonding with your creator.

My grandmother wasn’t a complex woman, but she walked with God. Not like Adam and Eve, but perhaps more meaningful. She had quite a difficult life by some peoples standard. She was born into poverty during the depression. Her father was electrocuted trying to rescue a man whose machine had come in contact with a power line, part of Roosevelts big “Rural Electrification” push of the 1920’s. Her mother became a young Norwegian widow with 6 children, plus 1 adopted child. They survived by taking in small sewing jobs and whatever work they could find. During the depression folks shared what little they had. Grandma used to say that Sunday was the best day because she was allowed to sprinkle a little sugar on a piece of bread as a special treat. What they didn’t have, they made up for in prayer. Sure they prayed for the immediate needs, but mostly they thanked God. They were grateful to the core for what they had. They prayed in the morning, before meals, while they worked, and before they slept. Yes, some were the pre-Written “Our Father” and Hail Mary” and from a small pocket sized prayer book, but most were just talking with God throughout the day.

My Grandmother married well, to a hard working French-Canadian farmer, but also found herself widowed at a young age. Fortunately, the last child had gotten married before his heart attack, but now with the children gone, she was alone. Grandma was very well liked, so she had plenty of visitors, and the children would stop by and help, but she was alone none the less. My earliest memories of her were when she was in her 50’s. I spent my summers with her and even as I got older and much stronger and larger, that little gray haired woman could out work me and flat wear me out. When my grandfather died , most of the farm, cows and equipment were sold, but she kept enough land for a dozen sows and she began to raise feeder pigs.Her quarter acre garden, berry bushes, and apple trees helped a lot of folks through some hard times. She raised far more than she could use, but just what God needed.

Like her mother she was always praying. Usually she would whisper her prayers, not for anyone else to hear, only loud enough for God. Sometimes I would ask what she was praying about. It was always simple things, thanking Him for giving her strength to perform a certain task, sometimes for strength to get by, sometimes it was communicating loneliness with the only one who would understand, and sometimes she would just say that she loves her Lord so much. Her Lord…isn’t that something. She let go of herself and her pain and made Jesus “Her Lord.” My, isn’t that personal. My grandmother walked with God. It wets my eyes to think of a relationship like that.

My Grandmother died of Alzheimers many years ago. Its a cruel death in some ways, she had really wasted away. The last time I seen her was a week before she died and she was still whispering prayers. She knew no one or anything at all, but she was still talking to her Savior. When Grandma got to meet Jesus it probably wasn’t that big of a deal, they were already old friends. Maybe Jesus needed help with his canning.

Oh friends, I really miss my Grandma. I wish I had learned earlier to walk with Jesus like she did. Its not too late friends. He’s still listening for you. Yes, even if He’s busy canning green beans.



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