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Old Cowbelle: Reckless prayers

Reckless Prayers happen when you ask the Lord to give you something to do FOR HIM. Sometimes, His answers seem reckless too.

My reckless prayers began over 50 years ago, when our two youngest children were small and bashful, too bashful to go to their three-year-old Sunday School. So I offered to teach the class.

After a few years of teaching the children's younger classes, and my own children had outgrown their need of me there, I thought maybe I should grow a little too.

So I prayed my first "reckless" prayer, by asking God to give me something else to do for Him. Not something to impress people, or to make me look good, but something that could bring someone closer to Jesus.

I thought His answer was equally "reckless," giving me something that I was not able to do, teach the ninth grade Sunday school class. My first reaction was, "No way can I do that! But after thinking about it, I realized this must be the answer to my reckless prayer, so I agreed with fear and trembling....

It turned out worse than I had expected. The class consisted of 16 pupils, most all of them boys. Boys that age intimidated me at the time. But that year, I grew closer to God than I had ever been before, because of my NEED for Him. It was a blessed year.

Those young people became so special to me and I still have a soft spot in my heart for them; many of them have grandchildren of their own.

Over the years, I continued to pray recklessly, making life interesting to see what impossible things God would hand me, like being the first woman "deacon" in our church (before that, only men had that privilege), serving on the Conference Board of our women's organization. Also having my writings appear in church magazines, I was asked to speak at churches here and there.

It takes no courage at all to write and submit things, but to get up and speak before several hundred people is quite another thing. Impossible! But people were so generous with their love and support, I found myself actually enjoying it.

Those things are all in the past, and since I am no longer able to do much of anything useful, I hesitate to pray those reckless prayers any more. I just concentrate on prayers to keep me upright for as long as it lasts! And pray for others.

But I challenge you to try praying a "reckless prayer," asking Him to give you something to do that could bring someone else closer to the Lord, and sincerely await His answer. It will make your life really interesting, and sometimes scary. If you do this seriously, I would so love to have you share the outcome with me.

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Our sincere sympathy and prayers to the family of Joe Janisch.

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