Connected by Prayer

All my prayers for you are full of praise to God! When I pray for you, my heart is full of joy, because of all your wonderful help in making known the Good News about Christ from the time you first heard it until now. And I an sure that God who began the good work within you will keep right on helping you grow in his grace until his task within you is finally finished on that day when Jesus Christ returns.

How natural it is that I should feel as I do about you, for you have a very special place in my heart. We have shared the blessings of God, both when I was in prison and when I was out, defending the truth and telling others about Christ. Only God knows how deep is my love and longing for you - with the tenderness of Jesus Christ. Philippians 1: 3-8 (TLB)

Michael Johnson lives in Pennsylvania. as a child brought up in a military family, he usually lived thousands of miles away from "home," which was his grandfather's dairy farm in rural Minnesota. One of his most cherished memories of his visits there as a child is that of his grandfather leading family prayers. Each day after he came in from milking, he would sit at the head of the table with his well-used Bible and his copy of The Upper Room. At the end he would pray for his family members by name.

What touched Michael so deeply as a child was that his grandfather remembered him and prayed for him by name. They were often far from home, and Michael was often lonely - especially in a new place. He found a special comfort in the fact that at a farmhouse table every morning his grandfather prayed for him.

Michael is now the age his grandfather was then. He has carried on his family tradition and prays for his family members by name. It helps him bring those who are dear to him closer, no matter how far away they are. Regardless of the distance between them, they are still held close as a family by prayer and the presence of God.

On this Memorial Day let us remember those serving who are far away from their families. Let us remember them in our prayers, and , if you know them, mentioned them by name.

Prayer: O God, who calls us family, be with those we love this day, and hold us together in your heart, in Jesus' name. Amen.

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