For all the parents of difficult teenagers, I’d like to share this story of the power of prayer.
My son was a senior in high school when he started drifting into problems with peers. The boys he became attached to “claimed” to be Christians but wanted to be like the world with wild parties and ungodly living. He was just smart enough not to get caught. My daughter, who had been his best friend, was now off to college and not available to help. I knew things were wrong as it became more difficult to communicate with him, or get him to join me in church activities and his Bible went untouched for months. After trying everything from threats to tears, finally in desperation I fell to my knees one lonely Thursday night and cried out to God and released my son into His care. I asked Him to do whatever it took to bring him back to Himself and out of rebellion.
I fell asleep, at peace at last, but a few hours later a phone call jolted me awake. It was my son, weeping into the phone. He had crashed into a pole and totaled his car, miraculously walking away without a scratch. A stranger “happened” to be nearby, towed the car and brought my son home at 2 am in the morning. I was in a state of shock. Then I realized it was my prayer of release that allowed God to act. I contacted my Pastor and he suggested a meeting the next day, reminding me of Hebrews 12:6-7. God will correct the child of God when he is disobedient. God may have been just waiting for me to let go of my child so He could take control.
When my son came through the door he was very upset, blaming God for taking away his car and his fun, but shaking in fear. When he realized he could have been crippled or worse in the crash, he wanted to talk to the pastor. The conversation the next day resulted in a big surprise. As the pastor asked some questions, my son began to quote scripture in reply. Two verses still remain in my memory – Romans 12:1-2 “I beseech ye, therefore, brethren, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world; but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable and perfect, will of God.” This big, tough teenage boy broke down in tears as he said he had been trying to run away from God and join his “friends” in their fun times. But it wasn’t fun and God’s Word haunted him night and day even though he refused to read the Bible for months. The verses of scripture were silently at work in his heart anyway. After that meeting, he changed dramatically as he willingly turned back God.
My son finished out his senior year with great peace and joy, but no car for a long time. The next year was his first year of college. Again the pull of fun time caused him to drift. He came home at Christmas complaining about the college authorities. When I offered to pray for him, a panic look came across his face. He asked me not to pray and reminded me what happened last year. This time I was praying that God would bring a godly man into his life as his mentor and friend, to help him learn how to say no to his peers. He agreed that was what he wanted and we both spent the holiday season in special prayer.
The week he returned to college, he had been assigned a new upper class room mate. There he met Kelvin, a young preacher boy. Kelvin was special as he was undergoing chemo treatment for cancer. Barely able to walk and with loss of his hair, Kelvin smiled a great welcome and became one of the strongest influences in my son’s life. He set a wonderful example of God’s love, joyful service to others. He guided my son into a medical career through the Army and a strong commitment to Lord. Kelvin was God’s answer to this mother’s prayer.
Kelvin helped many young people and parents during the short time he was on earth. My son now has a family of his own that receive this grandmother’s prayers as well.
God’s gift of prayer is readily available to His children. Spending the quiet time to use it is a challenge.
For comments, please e-mail Dr. Nancy direct at: [email protected]