When I was a young girl, my grandfather (my mother’s father) would come and spend part of the summer with us. I always looked forward to that time. When he visited, we had really good dinners and lunches, my parents did not raise their voices too much at us, and Mom bought him candy which he shared with us more often than she ever knew. He had arthritis and could not get around very well so he was confined to a chair, he loved for us to spend time with him and enjoyed talking to us. He always had fun stories and thought his grandchildren were smart, good looking and wonderful. Let’s face it who doesn’t like to hear that? I know I felt so loved when he was around.
As a young teen I was a night owl and in the summer, I’d stay up mostly by myself to watch television – Johnny Carson and the late show which had great old movies. One night at about two in the morning on my way to my bedroom, I heard my grandpa talking. I stopped dead in my tracks and wondered who on earth he was talking to. I remember feeling scared that it could be my grandmother who had died long ago and wondered if he was in his right mind. Curiosity got the best of me and I crept closer to the door to hear what he was saying.
I very clearly heard him name several of his grandchildren and my name was in the mix. I froze and wondered if he’d heard me outside his door. Then he continued to ask Jesus to look out for us and to keep us close to Him. I stood there stunned. My grandpa was praying for ME! There was so much love and caring in his voice as he petitioned the Lord with reverence and awe. I have carried that with me as a special memory since that time and have wondered how many times his faithful prayers helped or saved me from a bad situation.
That was not the last time I heard him pray at night. He had trouble sleeping due to pain or the fact that he’d napped too much throughout the day. My grandpa loved Jesus and had a prayer life and a quiet time that helped him endure his painful arthritis and the loneliness of not having my grandma around. He almost always had his Bible opened before him in his room. I often wonder what he would think of me now and if he would feel like his prayers had been answered.
These days I find myself in my grandpa’s position of not being able to sleep for various reasons. I remember that when Grandpa couldn’t sleep, he made good use of his time by praying. Though I don’t speak the words out loud because it would wake my husband, I find myself praying when I can’t sleep. I’m never at a loss for things to pray about or people to pray for. Sometimes He just lays people on my heart and I am compelled to pray. Honestly, I can’t think of a better thing to occupy my time in the middle of a sleepless night. I also know that prayer is powerful and helpful to those I pray for.
Prayer is an important part of the Christian life and connects us to the Lord. It doesn’t matter if it’s five minutes or an hour or if it is morning, afternoon or evening. The Lord loves to hear from you and will always listen to what you have to say. He’s available 24/7, and you don’t have to worry about waking Him or disturbing Him. The important thing about prayer is that it has power no matter what time we pray, and someone we love may need our prayers.
And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise them up. If they have sinned, they will be forgiven. Therefore, confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. James 5:15-16