However, she marked her note pad as follows
1. 2nd Chronicles 4:17 humble yourself, turn from wickedness, and seek His face
2.John 14:27 he will give us peace, not as the world gives, do not be afraid
She would pray those verses over her family to start with. She thought, 'what could have more clout than praying His own words to him and trying to follow them as well?
The days went by slowly and Aileen asked her son about a possible baby shower. Michael replied no, her family was giving her one. Aileen spoke to Cindy. Her reply was shy but said the same thing. 'Well, let me know when it is and if I can help.'
Aileen got busy and began crocheting for the new arrival. She remembered what she felt the Lord had told her regarding this child. Her mind went back to the story of Abraham and Ishmael. How awful it must have felt to say good bye to his son. Being a grandmother would not be easy either. Perhaps she would pray and ask the lord if she had misunderstood him.
Aileen earnestly sought the Lord on behalf of this child. She wanted to be a grandmother. She also prayed for her son. His drinking and drugs did not go away. His addiction was in full throttle. He had moved out a week before. He had a job at the shopping mall and found an apartment.
He still came to visit or have a dinner with them. Yet, the relationship was far from what a family could be. The years of praying for her son never stopped.
Cindy's baby shower came and went with no inclusion of Aileen. No invitation was given. Aileen took it upon herself to phone Cindy's mother.
The phone call was awkward and Aileen realized that Cindy's
parents did not wish to have contact with her. 'You can always send money. Perhaps pay half of the medical bills.' Aileen thought about it and came to the conclusion that Michael should be responsible and pay his own bills. She spoke to Tom and he agreed.
The quiet times of prayer were spent in heart wrenching pleas for certain things to happen. This went on for a few weeks and Aileen felt like no one heard her. She felt worn out at times. Then one night she sat quietly and closed her notebook. She rocked in her chair. She began to praise God for what He was doing that she couldn't see.
Aileen began writing down her thank you list. Her wrists grew tired after she'd written six pages. Yet there were so many things she was thankful for. She didn't miss even the smallest thing like hot water, tooth paste, trash cans and things that some countries do not have.
She set aside her list of petitions and began to praise the lord.
Then she sat quiet again. She heard a small voice in her head. 'Why do you ask for things?'
Aileen thought at first it was an odd question. Yet she pondered on it for a few days.
She asked for things because she was supposed to pray. No that wasn't really true. She liked to pray and be in the presence of her Lord. She thought she knew how things should be done and so she brought it to the Lord. No, that
sounds like she was holy spirit junior. God didn't need her to tell him what and how to do things. So why did she pray?
She realized that her motives were wrong. At least in some ways. She was praying for things that would make HER happy. She didn't think of the best things for the one she prayed for. Yet, what was the best? Once again a small voice spoke to her. 'Not what, but who?'
Aileen suddenly remembered Isaiah 55:8. 'My thoughts higher than you thoughts' She went to the chapter and read from verse 7-9
'Let the wicked forsake his way and the evil man his thoughts. Let him turn to the Lord and he will have mercy on him, and to our God, for he will freely pardon. For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,' declares the Lord. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.
Aileen thought on this and it hit her hard. She sat reading and tears slipped down her face. She had been praying for things that would make her happy. Sure, they were good things but they had a motive behind the prayers. Once again she asked the Lord to show her how to pray. She knew now how not to pray. She went back to her notebook and thought of how she'd prayed for everyone. The only problem areas were for Michael and his life, and now the grand child.
She added 3. to her strategy list. Pray according to what is God's best plan for everyone, and let personal emotions take a back seat to God's will.
A twinge of something seeped into her mind. 'Well, aren't we supposed to be happy? Aren't we supposed to be able to ask for anything? Ye have not because ye ask not? '
'NO' she thought and said out loud. 'That's not what the word says and it just proves what I already learned. In
James 4 :1-3 'What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don't they come from your desires that battle within you? You want something but don't get it. You kill and covet, but you cannot have what you want. You quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.'
Aileen spent a lot of time writing down what the scripture actually says. Her reason? She wanted to know how to pray in the right motive for the right things. She wanted to know how to be a warrior for the future descendents of her family. She was taking back what the enemy had stolen from this family in the only way she knew would work. Through the very words of God.