Wednesday, January 14, 2015
Beacons of Courage...Eli, Daisy and Vicky!
"God, give me guts."
- Prayer by Eli Mygatt as he defended his town as the British were
burning Danbury during the Revolutionary War
Some days it takes great courage to get up and face
circumstances that are unfathomable to most of us.
For some of us, we have had a journey that has rocked us to the core, tested our faith, and made us weary and sore and uncertain.
Fear, that awful visitor to our souls, can leave us shaking in our boots. So much is beyond our control. We can pray and pray and try and try, but we just can't "fix" lots of things. There isn't an easy plan or a "How To" list or a problem solving technique that will
put some things right.
Seriously, it is in those moments of despair I turn to God and have a one word prayer, "HELP!"
Help me, Lord. Help them, Lord. Please come near, Lord.
I don't know what to do, Lord. HELP!
Truth be told, I am often guilty of turning things, problems and difficulties over to God and asking Him to solve them, and then not ten minutes later taking them back again. I feel almost desperate for a solution, an immediate one, thank you very much. My middle name is not patience. I'd like God to fix things in line with my prayer requests and I'd like them fixed now. Please.
I can spout the words that God has a plan and I trust Him completely, but I'm not sure my inner worried mind always lines up with what I want to believe.
That's why I love Eli Mygatt's prayer during the Revolutionary War. Here he is a Colonel and trying to desperately defend Danbury, Connecticut as the British are trying to burn it to the ground. He is losing hope. He is out of resources. He can't imagine that things will turn around.
And in the midst of this awful, awful situation, when personally he is all out of fuel and energy and stamina, he pleads with God to give him courage. More vividly put...GUTS! He needs courage so deep, so profound that it will literally save his life. Only the word GUTS has the right ring to it. Eli is my kind of guy.
This many years later, Eli Mygatt is one of my beacons of courage. His prayer inspires me to say that same prayer and to know and expect that God will honor my prayer too. Even when it all seems awful, God will be with me. He will sustain me. He will give me the courage I don't have on my own. He will give me the GUTS to do that which seems impossible.
I believe this with every fiber of my being.
I too have felt, even though the circumstances may have been very different, that the enemy was at my door and only God could give me guts to face it head on. I have felt so scared that hope seemed a dim light.
I couldn't imagine how even God, in His infinite wisdom,
could make things better. My faith was put to the test.
And I have argued with God, while trying to be polite, about why in the world some things turn out as they do. Why oh why is there not always a happy ending for some lovely and wonderful folks who so deserve things to turn around, who so deserve to hear good news.
Why oh why didn't He save the life of Daisy Love
Merrick, that sweet little girl with cancer. Thousands had been praying. How could this possibly happen to this sweet, darling, Jesus-loving little sweetheart? Daisy had GUTS. She loved Jesus. Her faith was a beacon of courage to me.
In the midst of... it.just.can't.get.much.worse.than.this...
Daisy rallied others with her hope and joy and faith and deep, deep love for God. And when she went home to Jesus, we wept and wept for missing her sweet pixy face, her giant heart. But we were and are not the same because we knew her.
Thousands of us prayed for Daisy, and I believe those
prayers were heard. Daisy's faith, so poignant and real
changed lives and her guts, even in the face of death, while so sad, told a story of her deep faith. Daisy is one of my beacons of courage.
And this week my dear sweet friend Vicky Westra, who has stage four breast cancer, had an MRI on her brain.
And you know what Vicky, my precious beacon of courage, asked to do during the time of the MRI?
Vicky asked for prayer requests from those of us who love her. How could she pray for us? Lighten our load? Be of service? When her focus could have been on fear, and she probably in all honesty had some anxiety about the procedure, she chose to ignite her faith and trust in God.
She chose to BELIEVE...her word for 2015.
* Believe in one more day and week and month and year.
* Believe that God was right there with her.
And her belief is a candle in the dark for so many others who are struggling. Her faith, in these tough, tough circumstances, gives a beacon of hope and courage to the rest of us.
While I don't as yet know the results of Vicky's test, what I DO know is that her courage is contagious. Her faith, like Daisy's, inspires others to believe and find deep down the GUTS God gave them. Guts for the toughest moments.
Guts to know that God is there with us. No matter what. He is on the front line beside us when we are scared and desperate.
I am so grateful to know Daisy and Vicky. My life has been so enriched by these beacons of courage. And no matter what, I will always be praying, always. And always telling their story. Just like I love telling Eli Mygatt's inspiring story.
Give us guts, God. Please, give us guts!
Love you to the moon and back!
"We are all just walking each other home." ...