Sunday, October 13, 2013

Reinforcements Needed!


I am an SSA HOPE mom , who is blessed to be able to attend in our area a monthly support group of friends and family members of those with SSA. Last night, we had a guest speaker, who brought up the idea of restoration pray-ers. (Even as I tap at these keys this morning, I realize this distracted middle-aged brain may butcher most of what I heard, so I am not re-capping, just using some of what stuck with me as a talking point.)

As I understand it, restoration pray-ers would be a group of people (hand-picked by you) to join you in fasting and praying for your loved one or yourself. Hardly a radical idea, but what stood out to me was his description of how at times, when we feel crushed and defeated, overwhelmed and despairing, it’s hard for us to keep the “charge” going in our battle against SSA. He spoke of how your restoration team holds you up and leads the charge on those days. Because the people on a restoration team are further removed from and have more of an emotional distance from the pain of watching your loved suffer or your own suffering, they are not taking the same crushing blows and can remain in prayer for you even when you can barely lift your head to heaven. In other words, on those days when you just can’t seem to crawl out from under that giant boulder of SSA and the weight of it is keeping you down, making prayer almost impossible, such a group praying for you can take your place before the Lord and continue storming heaven and charging against the powers of hell.

When I first learned of our son’s SSA, even as shame, embarrassment, and fear were crushing me, I knew that I needed prayers for my son beyond mine and my immediate family. I remember I wrote letters introducing SSA, sharing our concerns for our son, and begging people to pray daily for him. I intended to hand these to only the most trusted friends, who I felt would pray and not condemn my son or my family. Even before I handed out the first letter, I had included a couple of other first names of young boys I knew who also needed prayers for this. So the letter ended by asking them to say the prayer to the Archangel Michael or any other prayer every day for those on the list. The list grew and grew, of course, and all of those names are now included on the SSA HOPE prayer list. Think what power there would be to defeat Satan and his lies and bring healing and hope, if all Christians had compassion and understanding enough to pray one prayer every day for those with SSA!!!

This speaker’s idea is more personal than that but revolves around that same “power of prayer” philosophy. Who could deny that God wishes us to join in prayer for each other? What believing Christian could doubt the power of such communal intercession before Our Lord? It’s beyond my scope here to delve into the theology of why God expects (and indeed sometimes appears to wait for) our prayers to be multiplied and echo before his throne before He will rescue us or our loved one. Suffice to say, He expects us to care for one another as family cares for each other. If one is hurting, we are all hurting - we are all one Body in Christ, right?

The problem with all this for both those with SSA and their family members is one of isolation. Often shame, fear of condemnation and even our own pride can keep us from reaching out to others for prayer. In guarding our privacy, it is as if we shut ourselves up into little prayer closets, and by our little lonesome self are trying to hold out against the battering rams of hell.
Picture if you will, Hell on one side of the closet, pushing and shaking the wall to crush us and our loved one, and on the other side is a closed door, beyond which lies our Christian family. If we opened the door and called out for help, willing and helping hands might rush to our aid to shore up that wall against the fiendish battering ram. How long can we or even our tiny family hold out alone in that closet?

Restoration pray-ers are more than a fine idea in this battle against SSA, this battle against the powers of Hell. Whether we find one or two, or ten or twenty, we must find a way to open the door to our prayer closet, to call for reinforcements, and to multiply our prayers before God!

Even beyond these teams of pray-ers, we need as Church members to join together in daily prayer for all those who battle SSA. Let this be our battle cry: “Once a Day for SSA.”

2 comments:

  1. "I intended to hand these to only the most trusted friends, who I felt would pray and not condemn my son or my family."

    Well, not the ones who don't condemn him, of course.

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  2. Evill, (interesting name choice - no judgment, just curious), you are correct. I was entirely secretive about my son's same sex attraction and selective in whom I asked to pray. There are many who would have told me and some who did, that the problem lay with my not accepting him etc... But you see I had never rejected him. NEVER. Of those whom, and many did, would tell us the problem was not a problem but rather we were the problem in our rejection of the gay lifestyle and our belief it is a sin to engage in sex outside of marriage. We were not on the same faith page with such people, and so it never occurred to me to ask for their prayers.
    I probably should have as God listens and speaks to all sincere hearts and perhaps God would have enlightened some of them to His Truth.
    SSA MOM

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