​​Deep In the Heart Blog

Prayers and Reflections by Elizabeth Goodine

"Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer."  Romans 12:12 (NIV)

December 1, 2018

My maternal grandmother, Edith Fuller, age ninety-nine currently, was interviewed at age ninety-one regarding her prayer life. The title of the article was "What Prayer Means To Me," and it was printed in a newsletter from The Life Church Dallas where she attends. Here were her comments:

"When I was a little girl, four or five years old, I remember we had family prayer every night. We all knelt, and my Dad always did the praying. As I got older and especially after I received the baptism of the Holy Ghost, I learned that praying was how I connected to God. I find comfort in prayer. I get healing through prayer. I can feel the presence of the Lord through prayer. After my husband died, I lived alone for many years. Prayer is what helped me sleep well at night and not be afraid through all those years. I pray when I wake up in the morning and when I go to bed at night. If I wake up during the night, I pray. I try to live in an atmosphere of prayer, so if I have to connect with the Lord, I can. Prayer is a great part of my life.  

My great-granddaughter Bethany was sleeping in my room one night a few months ago. She told me the next morning about being awakened in the middle of the night. She said, 'MawMaw was praying for everyone in the family, calling them by name, and prayed that they would be ready for the rapture. And it wasn't for just a few minutes; it went on and on and on.' Well that's ok that it woke her up! She needed to hear me pray because all of my family needs my prayers. And I need their prayers. I thank God for the privilege of prayer."

Photograph: Mamaw Fuller and Bethany.

Special thanks to Felicia Hill for interviewing my grandmother.

"Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always."  1 Chronicles 16:11 (NIV)

January 7, 2019

Our cousin-in-law Evangeline Inman hosts women’s conferences and invites internationally recognized speakers as well as women from her local area in eastern Canada to speak. She also invites her own mother, Mary Byrd, to speak. Although no one ever tells this to the famous speakers, Mary is always the favorite speaker at the conferences!

Mary taught first grade and led the chapel services for many years at the school in California where my own son and daughter attended. In her beautiful Scottish accent, she used to tell of her childhood days in Scotland and also make Bible stories come alive for the children She taught them to cry out to the Lord in prayer and to worship him with their whole heart. There is no doubt about it—this soft-spoken woman has had a powerful impact on hundreds of children.

Yet when Mary began speaking at Evangeline’s conferences, she felt intimidated standing on the stage addressing these adult women. After all, she was used to looking from the podium and seeing boys and girls. She prayed about it and sensed the Lord saying to her regarding these women, “They’re just little girls on the inside.” She then felt the confidence to speak at the conferences.

Do you ever feel that way? Like a child on the inside? Honestly, we all feel that way at times no matter how old we are, no matter how much responsibility we carry and no matter how fearless we may pretend to be. Sometimes we just need to run to our heavenly father. We are his children! We can cry out to him. He loves us and welcomes us. He will give us the strength and courage that we need so we can do what he has called us to do.

Photograph:  Mary and my daughter, Bethany, sharing a special moment at a family wedding.

"Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you."

1 Peter 5:7 (NIV)

February 15, 2019

Vivian Goodine was awakened in the middle of a freezing cold, Canadian winter night in 1972 by a loud knock at the downstairs door. Her husband, Glasier, was away on a snowmobile trip with some of his brothers and friends, and only she and their son, Wayne, were home. Peering through the window, she was startled to see the face of her pastor who had come to relay tragic news: Glasier had died of a heart attack.

The snowmobile trail had been packed with deep, wet snow making the journey to the campsite twelve miles into the forest much longer and more tedious than the men had anticipated. Around midnight they stopped for a few minutes to catch their breath. When they were ready to continue, Glasier pulled the cord to re-start the engine of his snowmobile. As he did, he fell backwards onto the snow and took his last breath. He was only fifty-five years old.

You can imagine the shock and sense of loss that Vivian, my mother-in-law, felt and how quickly her life changed. In a few short months she experienced another loss as Wayne, her only child, left home to attend college in the USA.  

Vivian found strength through her close relationships with family and friends and through her faith that God would take care of her. Her attitude made a real impression on me. I remember hearing her say, “Why worry when you can pray?” Too often I have had the opposite attitude: “Why pray when you can worry?” Can you relate?

What I do know is that worry will not change my situation.  But when I focus my eyes on the majesty of God, when I worship him with my whole heart and when I invite him into my situation, something changes inside me. The result is genuine peace, refreshing joy and seeing God answer prayer in unexpected ways.

Photograph:  Vivian and Wayne at our wedding.