Come quickly to help me, O Lord my savior (Psalm 38:22 NLT).
Friend to Friend
I was 32, a young mama, and battling breast cancer. The news had come at an already-hard time. My husband worked long hours each week, trying to keep our business afloat. When he paid the business expenses each month, there was just a small amount left to pay ourselves. The pressure often made me feel like I was near to drowning, but we told no one about our financial battle.
Christmas was weeks away. Our children had school expenses. I was going through radiation and chemotherapy, and medical bills were piling up. One day as I walked to the mailbox, I dreaded what I knew would be inside. Bills, bills, and more bills.
But this day was different. Tucked among the envelopes was a card without a return address. It appeared that someone had slipped it in our mailbox when we weren’t looking. When I opened it, cash fell out. The inscription simply read, “You are loved and seen.” I stood at the mailbox on that wintry day and cried like a baby. To this day, so many years later, I still have no idea who left the card in our mailbox. What I do know is the joy I felt. I was able to take care of an outstanding utility bill. I bought a few groceries. I bought school supplies, then tucked the rest away, with a plan to buy each of my children a small gift for Christmas.
Like the psalmist, I had prayed a simple prayer each day.
Come quickly to help me, O Lord my savior (Psalm 38:22 NLT).
However, my prayer wasn’t as eloquent. Some days, it was simply, “Help us, Jesus.”
And somewhere, someone became a part of answering that prayer. Their obedience was an instrument of hope at just the right time.
Answered prayers are often awe-inspiring partnerships with God.
Years later, long after that challenging season, I see prayer in a different light. When I was going through that challenging time, I saw prayer as a one-way conversation with God.
Do You see me, God?
What can we do, Father?
Now I see it as a multi-layered conversation.
God listened and breathed an invitation into the heart of someone close by.
That person said yes.
Tears fell as I stood at the mailbox; a glimpse of hope held in my hand.
Isn’t it amazing how God works?
Perhaps God has been leading you to encourage someone. Listen to that invitation. It may seem small. It may be behind the scenes. They may never know that you were the one who did it. But as you say yes to it, God will use your obedience to meet her, right where she is.
Jesus, how many times have You used someone to love me well? So many! A kind word. An unexpected and generous act. A text or card that said the words I needed to hear. All these things have been instrumental in my own life. Show me someone who may need that same encouragement. Thank You for inviting me to partner with You to love others,
In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Now It’s Your Turn
What is one way God is asking you to partner with Him?
These are just a few ways you can do that.
- Drop a note of encouragement in the mail or send an encouraging text.
- Tuck a gift card in an envelope for a family who may be struggling with school expenses or groceries.
- Bring a meal to someone who is ill.
- Create a comfort kit with nonperishable snacks, a few dollar bills, travel size toiletries, and a new pair of socks. Give them out as the Holy Spirit leads.
- Be present in a time of crisis. You don’t have to have the right words. Just let her know she is not alone.
More from the Girlfriends
When someone is walking through a difficult season, she may not have the words to pray, but still desperately long for connection with God.
Suzie’s new book, Prayer Starters: Talking with God About Hard Times is not a book about prayer, but a book to help her connect with God through prayer, right where she is
If you have a friend who is in a challenging season (or you are there too), Prayer Starters is a gentle resource to help her connect with God and find the hope and encouragement she longs for.
You can download some fun freebies if you order today.
(As an Amazon Associate, Girlfriends in God earns A SMALL COMMISSION from qualifying purchases using this paid link.)
© 2022 by Suzanne Eller. All rights reserved.
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Thank you for your encouragement this morning! Your story brought me back to a time when something similar happened. My husband and I had two young children. We were living in an old New England farmhouse and were in the middle of a cold New England winter struggling to make ends meet. We had closed off the second level of our home and were staying in the first level so that we had a smaller area to heat. Our heating fuel tank was running very low end we knew it would soon be empty and we’d be in trouble. We called the fuel company and asked to schedule a fill up, but were told we would have to prepay before they would deliver. We did not have the money up front. I just didn’t know what we were going to do. We did not tell a soul, but God knew. One day my parents called and asked if they could talk to us. They shared with us that their heating system had malfunctioned and they were going to be replacing it with something different. They had already prebought fuel for the season, but would not be able to use that kind of fuel with the new heating system. They asked the fuel company if they could transfer the balance of money they had prepaid on their fuel account into ours! They didn’t even know about our situation. I was truly in awe of God’s timing and the solution He had in mind for our dilemma! I’m sure you will also believe me when I tell you that the amount transferred into our fuel account was almost, to the penny, the amount needed to completely FILL our fuel tank which kept our home warm through the the remainder of the cold New England winter. I think back on that time and feel so loved and cared for. God does see us and loves us.
That’s a beautiful story!
I have been this person. And what a blessing it is to receive a text from someone wishing you a blessed day or another act of love and kindness. I pray that I can show an act of kindness today to someone.
Isn’t it funny how something like a text or voice mail of encouragement can be exactly what you need.
2 Corinthians 1:3-4. This says it all. We can pay it forward to others what we receive from God! Thank-you Jesus!
Amen. : )
Just last week I was in the grocery store following a young father. We acknowledged each other, and the frustration (lack of funds) just spoke to me. He said he had 4 kids and had just stopped at the local big box store and was overwhelmed by the costs.
I knew then, by watching him studying his shopping list, and over hearing his anxious phone call to his wife; he needed an act of kindness.
I checked out of line before him and told the cashier, the remaining change I was receiving should go onto to his bill. Mind you, my balance wasn’t a lot of money, but I wanted him to know, I empathized with him.
He caught up with me in the parking lot, and said “Excuse me….you didn’t have to do that.”
I replied, something along the lines of…yes, we are supposed to help each other. He called over his shoulder “It takes a village” and I said, “Amen!”
God will show us ways to shine the light of Jesus, by just listening for the clues; just like Jesus does.
You may have no idea how something that seemed small to you felt big to this family. Thank you for your obedience. : )
Thank you for this. I’m currently in a time of waiting for the Lord to answer a very serious matter in prayer. Reading this makes me realize that He as others in mind to use for that purpose. My job is to pray, trust, and wait. His job is to answer in His way and time. May I please ask for prayers from anyone here who is willing to pray for me? I need a miracle and the waiting is stressful. Thank you and God bless.
Lord, Lana longs for a miracle and only you know what that miracle will look like. Thank you for taking care of her needs, spiritually, physically, and beyond. Amen.
Thank you so much for sharing, I so needed this. We are in a time of waiting and hoping we don’t drown. We are tyring to sell our house and have put money into it to help it sell….aka more bills. Then the market slowed down and we have had no offers. I try not to stress or worry, but it’s starting to get real. I am a stay at home mom trying to run a shirt business and I also watched a baby in my home to help ends meet. I no longer watch the baby as they put her in pre-school and my shirt sales are very low…I feel like I’m loosing money instead of making money right now. Lord help us!!! We need you!!! Help me not to look at the situation, but to look to You.
Father, I pray for Shannon. I’ve been there. Working so hard, doing all I know to do, but it feels like it’s not enough. I pray for this house to sell. I pray for a good buyer with a good price. I pray for this business, Lord. I pray for orders that will flood in and for the time and energy to fulfill them. I pray for your presence in her pain, and your miracles for her needs, amen.
Shannon, what is your shirt business? Is it an online business? I’d love to know the name and URL.
Thank you for a beautiful message, you reminded me with the many times that God showed up in a miraculous way to show me His Love and His Care
Sometimes it’s his presence. Sometimes it’s a miracle. Sometimes it’s someone who loves like Jesus. They are all beautiful.
Thank you for the word shared. And God bless you for replying and praying for everyone.
I am in a similar situation myself, bills to pay, medications to buy,divorce threats from my husband.
My business doesn’t flow as much either,But I am encouraged that God will come through.
I will be a blessing in my own small way to other people whiles I wait on Jesus.
Father, wrap around Nana today. I pray you will open doors. That you will meet her every need, emotionally and physically. May she feel you close, Father. Surprise her with provision and hope, amen.
You are not alone. i am willing to lift you up in prayer.
May God’s peace be with you.
Thank you for praying!
What an Awesome God we serve! All honor & Glory are Yours!☝🏽♥️
I received my book today, “Prayer Starters.”😊
Well, that brings me joy!
This was so powerful! Thank you for sharing…an on time word for me.
Donna, praying you feel God so close today.
Omgosh, I feel like I was the one who wrote this…. I can’t tell you how many times I cried “Help me Jesus” when I had no idea how I was going to pay a bill, keep my kids fed, clothed and warm. And yet, God sent me my dad for 6 months to carry me through cancer, people volunteered to roof my home, gift cards appeared in the mail box for food and clothing for the kids, and wood would anonymously be delivered to keep the house warm when I had to keep the wood stove going throughout the winter. My dad gifted me each Sunday with a DD gift so I could treat myself to a hot tea. Just enough on the gift card for 6 med hot teas. I will never never take anything in life for granted. ALL things come from the Lord and I will pay it forward as the Lord wills to whom He chooses. All the days of my life.
I love how people loved you well, Karen. Praying you are cancer free now! (I’m a two-time breast cancer survivor and have walked through this as well.)
Thank you so much for your message. It was a timely reminder that God has a plan and that we must continue to believe in him and have faith. I pray that I will be able to hear God when he talks to me and that I will have the courage to act on his calling. I unfortunately know that there have been times when God has called me to do things and I have “chickend out”. This story is such a good reminder that we don’t know what the other people are going through and why God is calling us to act and that we should just do it.