Knees to the Earth. What comes to mind when you hear that phrase? Desperation?Humility? Reverence? Those words remind me of a quote by Abraham Lincoln:
“I have been driven many times upon my knees by the overwhelming conviction that I had nowhere else to go. My own wisdom and that of all about me seemed insufficient for that day.”
To the world, a person on his knees might look weak—like a slave, beggar, or anyone who puts himself at the mercy of another. But in Christ’s world, we are never stronger than when we are on our knees.
God’s world is full of paradoxes. The Bible tells of the servant leader, the last who become first, treasures in jars of clay, and being strongest when we are weak. I truly believe the greatest warrior in God’s kingdom will not be a fiery pastor, or an eloquent evangelist or even a charismatic leader—she might well turn out to be a crippled old lady in some forgotten corner who spends hours every day in prayer.
I gave the figurine pictured above to my mom a year or two before she died. She was feeling useless. Her life had been one long history of Christian service—missionary, pastor’s wife, women’s bible teacher, but in the end, with her health failing, all she could do was pray. ALL. Maybe those years were the most effective years of her life.
In two weeks, we will be starting our online bible study: Knees to the Earth; Prayer that Empowers a Woman’s Life. It will be a re-working of a class Shereen and I taught on Tuesday Mornings back in the fall of 2012.
The class is built around the framework of the Lord’s Prayer. There are many great examples of prayer in the Bible, but when Shereen and I were preparing this study, we always came back to the best example—Jesus.
His disciples recognized this. Luke 11 tells us Jesus was praying one day “in a certain place.” Maybe they’d seen him pray there before. Maybe it was his daily habit. Maybe he prayed more than once a day. Whatever the case, they were spurred to ask him specifically, “Master, teach us to pray.”
His answer was a simple prayer, a few lines long, one most of us have heard and recited so often it may have lost its meaning. Yet, if we look closely at what it says, I think we’ll see it holds everything we need to know about prayer. Over the next 11 weeks, we’re going to look at it closely—line by line— with examples of people throughout the Bible who have been men and women of prayer.
I hope you will join us. The beauty of an online class during the summer is its flexibility. If you have a busy week or take off on a vacation, you can always catch up when you get back. We also hope you will get involved by doing the homework and leaving comments for others to read. In fact, we value your interaction so much, we are prepared to offer a prize each week to someone who joins in our discussion.
Flexibility, online community, prizes–what could be better? And if you don’t already receive a copy of our posts each week in an email, then go to our HOME page at equipherlife.com and sign up under the subscribe button in the right hand column. That way you won’t forget and accidentally miss a lesson.
See you on June 4th!