38 years ago today Steve Bearden asked me to be his wife. Best YES I ever yessed!
“Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another, so that you may be healed. The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much.” James 5:16 (NASB)
This scripture has been rolling around in the gray matter of my brain all week. I have a friend on Facebook that posts some pretty awesome answers to prayer. Being a praying woman myself I contacted her through Facebook messenger and asked her if she would consider praying for me to be healed of this nagging lower abdominal pain that has me up at night. Going from doctor to doctor with no cause found yet is discouraging. I have been praying for myself and asking everyone I know to pray until they are probably thinking “aren’t you well already?”
This malady has kept me from correctly rehabing my right knee. I cannot lift my leg properly to strengthen the quad muscle so anyway it has been a disappointment as I sit here like a slug unable to get back my quick walking gait or exercise at all for that matter. Realizing there are many people a lot worse off I stopped the pity party that wasn’t much fun at all. No one would come and what fun is a party without guests?
Hearing the familiar “ding” of Facebook messenger I saw her reply. She asked me to call her at 3:30. I was full of anticipation waiting to see what wonderful healing prayers she would pray. After the usual pleasantries she asked “so, do you have any unconfessed sin?” What? I hardly knew her. I wasn’t going there with her besides I was all caught up with God in that department, so I thought. Going down and checking off the “I’m good there” boxes in my head I stopped at the “my biological dad is treating me like a stranger and always has” box. We dealt with that bitterness; pulled that baby out by the root! Dad, I love you and forgive you for always not being there as a dad. Tears wiped away I was ready to receive the prayer. “Anything else?” She asked. What? Again? Ok back to the boxes. Check good. Check good. Check good. I was suddenly caught up short by this one. We think we can hide from God and we think we are OK but when we harbor sin it will eventually rear it’s ugly head. “I’m jealous of my girlfriends.” I blurted. Yes, blurted. It surprised me totally! So the green monster reared it’s ugly, slithering, slimy head.
Goodness knows I tried to pull those words back in as she asked me why because I was about to sound like a junior higher. God was dealing with those deep seeded feelings I was holding. I have this amazing fabulous group of girl friends and we are doing life together. We have raised our kids, gone through our kids teen years together, weddings, grandbabies, deaths, serious serious problems all together like those women in the movie Steel Magnolias. These are solid rock Christian women who have always prayed for me and been there for me and now I am confessing that I am jealous of them! I am also putting this out there and some of them will read it. Hopefully they will know confession is good for the soul and love me through this (yes they will!). I was jealous of their lives. They were going to the gym, walking together, loosing weight, looking fantastic while I sit here like a slug not able to do anything! My inner child was throwing a temper tantrum and I was hardly aware. How impossibly ridiculous of me.
Tears were streaming down my face as I sobbed in to the phone. Tears of repentance because why should I feel this way? They were going to all look amazing and I was still going to be all lumpy and frumpy. ABSURD! Oh boy our flesh can do a number on us. Ladies, the flesh is weak. Apologizing for sounding so very foolish I wiped my tears. She told me I was not foolish at all. Those were very real feelings. They were mine and needed confessing before God so we could proceed with a pure heart. I prayed for forgiveness and then she took it a step further. “Now bless them. Pray that God will bless them in their health and new vitality.” she said. Well, that was easy and a pleasure. I poured out my heart for each one individually praying for their success. It was very liberating, such a delight.
After the confession session she reminded me of this passage in James. She prayed for my healing and we hung up. I was still shaken from what my gracious merciful Heavenly Father had done in me and for me. This loving sister coaxed those sins out of me by merely asking me to examine myself. Isn’t that what we are supposed to always be doing? As you approach God’s throne today and pray, examine yourself. Ask God if there is any hidden sin in you. My lower abdomen has been amazingly peaceful since our prayer time. The pain has lessened significantly. Every day I cheer my friends on in their quest to be healthy praying for their success, sure footedness as they walk and blessings on their hearts and minds. I pray that one day I will be able to join them. The Apostle Paul said in Galations 5:1 “it is for freedom that Christ set us free.” We are free indeed.