There are many wonderful things we can do as single-again adults that add joy and encouragement to the lives of others, particularly younger women. The most important thing we can do to provide hope and refreshment to the souls of younger women is praying for and with them. What we say and the actions we take to assist may be important and even necessary for where they are at the moment, but when we pray for and with them the deep wealth of God’s heart is expressed to them. When we pray in Jesus’ name we allow room for God to work out His great plans and purposes as He orchestrates the events of our lives and the lives of those we pray for.
Today’s young women today are caught up in the whirlwind of life in a way that no generation before had a clue about. These young women are bombarded with schedules and business that some of us older women cannot imagine. Whatever happened to those evenings that were spent sitting on the front porch talking with neighbors while the children played under the stars until they were ready to drop? Whatever happened to quiet evenings at home?
As I look around me and listen to young women of today, I often wonder if they even have one night a week when they are at home for several hours before they go to bed. Do they ever sit down to a set table and have a quiet meal with their husband and children? A meal they prepared from scratch with the family assisting to get it on the table?
If they cannot find time for these family times, then when is there time to be alone with the Lord? If they have no time to spend one night each week preparing dinner and sharing a meal with their family, when do they have time to read the Bible together and to pray? My guess is, and I have had many tell me so, they are not letting their children hear them read the Bible or pray. Allowing the business of the world to take priority leaves little to no time for Christ.
What matters is Christ! He matters so much that it is increasingly important for us older women to nurture the younger women by letting them hear us pray for them and then to pray with them. Modeling the ways of the Lord is something we are commanded to do. Titus 2:3 teaches us, “Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior… teaching what is good. v 4, “that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, v 5 “to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, that the Word of God may not be dishonored.”
The way we older women respond to the needs of the younger women we know is important to Christ, so it should be important to us!
One way to show your young children how important prayer is to you is to make a habit of praying while in the car. What a marvelous time driving can be when the radio, DVD player, and all other electronic gadgets, including cell phones are turned off and each member of the family shares what they want to pray about… then the time spent driving is used to commune with Christ. Prayer walks are another way to teach younger women how they can spend time with the Lord, show how important prayer is to their family, and get exercise in while praying.
I used to walk every night when I lived in Colorado. When a neighbor joined me and shared a problem she had, I suggested we pray right then. She was stunned as she asked, “You mean you can walk and pray?” Of course we can pray anytime, anywhere. When we get into the habit of talking to God about our lives and consulting Him for His wisdom in any situation, we are on the road to “praying without ceasing.”
God longs to hear from His children. He wants to express to us things about Him, His ways, and His mercy that we can learn while listening to Him in prayer. If there is no time to pray, then when is there time to listen? We need to be quiet before the Lord in order to hear His voice in our spirits. The most profound messages from Christ to me come when I listen to Him. He promises to be our teacher, but we must listen to Him to know what His good and perfect will is for our lives.
Salvation is the most important thing that can ever happen to a person… knowing that eternity will be spent with God in heaven is the ultimate and we certainly do want everyone to know Christ and have that blessed assurance of heaven. However, all-too-often, we stop there and leave young Christians alone in their new life in Christ. What a blessed opportunity it is to encourage a child of God to pray.
It makes no difference if we are older, empty nesters, or what our place in this world is… as Christians, we are to pray. We are to encourage others to pray. We are to help mentor those younger than us and younger in the Lord to pray by hearing us pray and by encouraging them to call upon the Name of the Lord in prayer.
It’s not always about how much time we spend, although I think there are times when praying can and does take long periods of time because of the heaviness of our hearts. It is about the relationship with the Living Christ. It is about loving Him so much that time with Him is the top priority of our lives. Helping another child of God to recognize the importance of prayer is one of the greatest joys a Christian, old or young, can ever experience. The need is great. Be an encourager today and spend time praying with and for a friend. Communion with Christ is the most powerful and refreshing way to be encouraged while encouraging another.