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Written by: BBC Member

The woman sat rocking before the dying flames of the fire, in her lap lay an open Bible, her eyes were closed and her lips were moving in prayer.  She could hear the rain beating against the windows. She had gotten news from the doctor that day that her cancer had spread and that her time was very short. She had already known this within herself for a while because the pain had become almost unbearable. She had told the doctor that she had known for sometime but that she was not worried for herself as she had met the Lord as her Savior many years ago.
Therefore, the cry from her heart and the prayer on her lips were not for herself but for her young daughter. As she sat there her mind wandered back in time to the childhood of her daughter. She could see in her mind’s eye the young girl running toward her, arms out-stretched to receive a hug, eyes shining with the innocence of a child.  In spite of her sadness, she could not help a weak smile coming to those ashen lips. Again she sent up the prayer that had echoed in her heart for five or six years now, “Oh, God!  Be with my child, I lift her up before you, I claim healing for her sickened body, I claim mercy for her broken mind.  Please God; bring my child back home to me and to You, dear Lord!” 
The mother’s mind continues to wander. Back in time when she took her child to church, how she had taught her to pray, told her stories about Jesus, made sure that she knew about the risen Savior.  She can’t help but wonder what had happened, had she done something wrong. When she talked to her pastor he had told her not to blame herself, but as a mother how could she not help but wonder.  If only she could hold her daughter as she had as a child, if only she could kiss her and make the hurt go away! 
The fire was fading into embers, but still the mother sits there and sends up a prayer to the heavens for her fallen child. She stirs faintly, but soon the rocker begins to slow and she falls into a restless sleep.
On the other side of town, huddled up in a darkened doorway, stands a young girl. Gone is the beauty that she once had. Her hair is hanging limp on her thin shoulders; instead of a sparkle in her eyes, one can only look into the haunted eyes of misery, eyes darkened with the ravishing pain she is feeling, needing that next fix; arms that use to reach for her mother’s hugs, now marred by track marks of a needle that is now her only friend. 
Her foggy mind tries to think back as to how she had gotten herself into this way of life. She had smoked her first joint on a dare from one of her “friends”.  She knew better, her parents had talked to her about drugs; she had gone to church and knew that this was sin. However, it seemed fun at the time and besides she didn’t want to be the only one in the crowd not doing this. She didn’t want her friends to think she was a goody two-shoes.  From there it had seemed easier to try other things, alcohol, and which lead eventually to her snorting pills and finally that fateful day when she went along with the crowd and decided it would be fun to get the ultimate high by shooting up.  
That sealed her fate. From that point on she needed more and more in order to get that high, that good feeling.  Her parents tried to get help for her.  They had talked with her, they had taken her to the pastor, put her in rehab but none of it had worked because at this point she didn’t want to quit.  She only lived for that high, for that feeling of soaring to new heights, that feeling of euphoria. She ignored that sickness when she came down, that utter lack of control as her body cried out for another fix, for more and more and more.
Now here she was doing anything she had to do for a fix. Stealing from family, friends, strangers or whoever to get enough for one more time.  She had even resorted to selling her body because her habit had gotten so costly, needing hundreds of dollars a day to feed her habit. 
Yes there were times when she wanted to go home but how could she let her mom see her like this, how had she ever gotten herself into this mess?  Just then she sees a car pull up and she rushes toward it knowing that it is her dealer.  As she jerks the door open she is surprised to see her dad.  She falls back not wanting him to see her like this.  Her dad gently asks her to come home with him, her mom is very sick and wants to see her.  He reaches for her arm to help her in the car but she recoils and runs away back into the shadows.  He calls out to her, but she just keeps running.  Finally, in despair he gives up and drives away.
Later the girl hooks up with her dealer and again reaches for the needle that is going to help her forget, that is going to take her away from the pain of this world and take her to a place of forgetfulness. But this time there is no forgetting.  She thinks of her sick mom and longs to feel that loving touch of her mother’s hands, to be folded in her arms and to forget the cares of this life.  She longs to hear those words of love from her mom that assures her that things are going to be alright.  To feel that gentle kiss on her forehead and to hear those sweet words of prayer her mom sends up for her. 
That next night the girl is determined to go home and see her mother.  She cleans herself up the best that she can, living on the streets did not allow for much cleaning up. As she approaches the house, she sees her mom setting in her rocking chair before the fire, an open Bible in her lap. The girl goes up and opens the door and walks in, calling out to her mom.  “Mom.”  “Mom!”  but there is no answer. She goes over and knells down beside her mom and reaching out and touches her hand.  She pulls back in horror.  The hand is cold and still, there is no hug, no loving touch, no gentle words, only the cold stillness of death.  The girl screams, her dad comes running and together they face the loss of one they loved so dear.
It is now five years down the road from that fateful night. A young woman and her child walk up the steps to church on Sunday morning. The little girl looks up at the young woman and says “I love you mommy.”  The young woman hugs the child to her, looking down into those shining eyes, and assures her that she loves her too. She takes the child into the church, wanting to make sure that her daughter is taught about Jesus and how he had died and that he forgives all sins, no matter how far down in sin one has gone or what they have done. 

Yes, we see that the dying mother’s prayers have been answered.

Prov. 22:6
Train a child up in the way he should go; and when he is old, he will not depart from it.


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(The Importance of Prayer)

Written By: BBC Church Member


I had been working all day, doing the normal things that a wife and mother usually does around the house. When I went to bed that night I fell asleep the minute my head hit the pillow, not even taking the time to pray and thank the Lord for the strength to get through the day and for all the blessing he had bestowed on me and my family.

Suddenly, I could feel something strange happening to me.  It was as if I was my spirit was separated from my body and I was traveling through space. Off in the distance I saw an object, something I couldn’t quite make out what it was.  As I neared I realized it was a pair of sandals. The sandals were worn and dusty as if their owner had been walking a great distance in them.  Upon closer inspection, I saw that they were covered in blood.  My mind was racing, what did this mean? 

Then it came to me. These were the sandals of my Lord.  Often I had heard of and thought of the crown of thorns on his precious head, the agony he had suffered on the cross, the beating he had taken in my place, but I had never considered His sandals. 
Those dusty sandals had walked many miles while here on earth going from place to place with His message of love and hope for mankind.  I could imagine the time He had walked to the home of His friends Mary, Martha and Lazarus. The walk he made to the tomb of his friend, Lazarus, and with power and love called Lazarus from the grave. I can see the dust settling on his feet as he ministered to the five thousand; when he walked along the road and changed Zacchaeus’ life forever.  Those very sandals had been on His feet when he was partaking of the Passover super, those very sandals carried Him to the Garden of Gethsemane where he bent that weary head to pray to His Father in heaven.
Then I see Him as he is arrested and shuffled back and forth between the leaders, until finally the words ring out that will echo for eternity in the pits of hell in the minds of Judas, Pilot, the high priest and others, “Crucify Him, crucify Him.”  I can see him bent and the soldier with a whip called the cat of nine tails start beating my Lord until the blood is pouring from His precious back and dripping upon and into His sandals.  I see them shove a crown of thorns upon that dear head, the thorns penetrating into his skin and the blood flowing down his face.  Then they present him with a heavy cross to carry up to Calvary, the place where He must die. As He wearies, His feet are dragging with His burden, He falls, then gets back up and continues his journey of love up to Golgotha.

I can see the soldiers as they run the spikes through those precious hands and feet, laughing, mocking, cursing the very Son of God.  As He is dying they cast lots for His clothes, but no one wants the dusty, worn, bloody, sandals so they throw them aside. There to lay at the foot of the cross which holds a dying, bleeding Savior; there for the blood to drip upon. But even in this time of agony and shame I hear the loving words “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” 

Then I woke up and realized I had been dreaming.  Right then I knew I had failed my God in not having my prayer time. I thought how tired my Lord must have been that day, how horrible the very Son of God must have suffered when the blackness of my sin was placed upon Him, the darkness of my sin being worse than the physical pain he went through. How could I even think of not taking time to thank Him for that walk he took in those dusty, bloody sandals, that walk that he took in my place, for my sin.
I felt ashamed that I had neglected my talk with the Father.  “Forgive me Lord and never let me forget about your love and forgiveness and for that dusty walk you took for me that day.  Never let me neglect the fellowship of prayer with you.”