Savrasov Pascher Monastery 1871
“He lives always to intercede for us.” Hebrews 7:25
Sitting in our pj’s and chatting for too long, left me with little time for a quiet time this morning. I felt a need to have just a moment of peace with the Lord, so I picked up my Celtic prayer book, knowing there would be scripture, a short encouragement that would at least put my soul in the presence of God, as I readied myself to hurry off to my activities for the day. Little did I know that those 5 minutes would comfort me all day, and meet me at my point of need at this very juncture in my life.
Seems two men sought wisdom from an educated, old monk who was reputed to be a man of great character and distinguished in his devotion to scripture. Arriving at the sea coast town, they left their ship and climbed the long hill to the monastery. Several days were invested in revealing spiritual conversations , ponderings about God’s nature and presence, and the essence of true spirituality. With full souls, they bid farewell to the wizened old monk and walked toward the ship that would take them back home. With hearts overflowing, they gratefully planned how they would apply such wisdom in their daily lives in their home town.
Almost as soon as the giant ship left the small port, a raging storm gathered and lightening crashed about with thunder filling the air, and the ship swayed back and forth, the captain straining to keep it afloat amidst the crashing waves. In terror, the two men came aboard to access the danger. Peering through the dark, blowing mists, searching for the lights of home fires burning near the shore, they saw a shadowy figure emerge from the door of the monastery. Almost as soon as the figure appeared, they noticed it was the old monk, looking out upon the ship at sea, and that he fell to the soaking ground on knees and began, in a posture of prayer, calling out to God passionately.
After a very short interlude, the sea momentarily softened its rage and gave way to a semi-clear pathway so that the ship could secure a way to come back to the safety of the port. The monk, it seems had dedicated his heart and strength and devoted cries to God for the safety of those who had so recently been in his charge.
Somehow this story has been with me all day. It seems such a gracious picture of the sanctified old monk, not just being a person of the Word, but a man of His way–calling out before the throne of heave for those entrusted to his charge. This a picture to me, as I seek to be such a saint for my children and husband.
They, in the storms of their lives, are beyond my control, but not beyond the help and counsel of my Father and God. But as I witness these storms and see the seas of tempest surrounding them, I, too, have access to the throne of God. Perhaps, I will be their comfort to help them be brave as the shadowy figure was for the two men in the story. I battling on their behalf, that in their storms, they might feel the grace of God, find the strength of God to save them, and know the comfort of God’s presence right where they are.
And then I read, in Hebrews. He, my Lord and savior, even as a priest before the throne of God, like the old monk, lives to make intercession for me, His child. So thankful for this picture today as I face my own storms of life. And so very strengthened to be the prayer warrior as one son faces the demons of Hollywood, the other the liberal philosophy in Boston, and my two girls–one learning to drive on the freeway, and the other making big decisions, need me to stay before the throne for them. God has access to their brains and consciences. He will whisper His truth and wisdom into their lives. Somehow, mysteriously, I can help them by battling in the heavenlies as their prayer warrior and devoted mother, even as the monk did for those beloved of his–even as Jesus is so willing to do for me.