Saturday, July 21, 2012

Men Like Oaks

These two young men spent their days with us while we were in Bocono. They drove us around in badass 4x4s

carried the many heavy boxes of doctoring-and-dentisting goods from place to place

bought us bread

watched out for us, even on the playground

and made my daughter smile like this:

And when it was time for us to leave, they escorted our van all the way to the city limits. Just because, I guess.


On our last day we walked up one arterial road and down another with the task of praying for the city.

It was my idea, but my motives were (as usual) unpure. I mostly just wanted to walk, since I knew we had a seven-hour bus ride and another 24ish hours of air travel ahead. As we started up the narrow, broken sidewalk I asked God to calm my nerves and help me think about something other than myself for 30 minutes. When my spirit finally came around I was overwhelmed. How do I pray for a city? I didn’t know where to start. Then I looked up. Sis was walking ahead of my, holding hands with one of these young men who had so patiently and completely offered her big brother love. And when he turned around I saw that his eyes were as wet as mine.

And so I prayed - with a heart wrenched and earnest - that the Lord would watch over these two young lives and pour out on them a heaping measure of his riches. I prayed through Psalm 1:

Blessed is the one
who does not walk in step with the wicked
or stand in the way that sinners take
or sit in the company of mockers,
2 but whose delight is in the law of the Lord,
and who meditates on his law day and night.
3 That person is like a tree planted by streams of water,
which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither—
whatever they do prospers.

I prayed that he would guard their steps, help them put their feet in the right place before they stand, and keep them from corrupting company. I asked that he would grow them straight and tall and mighty with deep roots, near the stream. I asked that he would bless their studies, that they would find work that satisfies them, and allows them to provide for their families. I prayed for them as husbands. I prayed for them as fathers. I prayed for long lives of service and thanked God in advance for the good fruit and shade that they would provide their communities.


In some of the slower moments during the trip, while the doctors were doctoring and we were waiting out the rain, we talked about music. One of the young men introduced me to this song:

It was playing today as I ate lunch and my heart burned again with prayer over these two young lives.
Today, I feel the distance between home and Bocono in my throat.
I miss these souls and ask God again for his close and constant blessing on my friends who feel so far away.

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