by Janet Holm McHenry
My faithful car of ten years gave up the ghost a couple weekends ago. I was headed to a retreat in the Santa Cruz Mountains, when the car would not shift into an upper gear. The transmission then pretty much died on a busy freeway in Sacramento. I somehow I hobbled my way back a half dozen miles to my sister and brother-in-law’s home.
“Is there any way I could borrow a car?” I asked.
Fortunately, they had one available vehicle, but it was one of their two giant, 15-passenger daycare vans. With quick instructions and a prayer, I climbed up into the driver’s seat and continued on my way to the Santa Cruz Mountains for the three-day event. Two days later, my dear husband brought his car hauler down and hauled my car home one hundred miles over the Sierras to the car boneyard on his ranch.
So now, temporarily, I am driving a 1997 Cadillac two-door Eldorado. In other words, I am your grandmother cruising down the highway with her bottom almost touching the road. It’s a decent car, really, but not one that will do well when winter hits. And snow has already fallen on the Sierras a few times in the past week.
Normally I would be freaking out, but I have a sense of peace about the next car God will provide, because I know God is in the business of daily bread.
When Jesus taught the Sermon on the Mount, more than once he taught principles about prayer and even provided a model prayer for the disciples:
“Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen.” (Matthew 6:9-13 KJV).
Tucked in the center of that prayer is a simple request: “Give us this day our daily bread.” Jesus was teaching that it’s okay to ask for the simplest of needs—even food for the table. If I need money to pay the bills, it’s okay to ask. If I need money to pay my kid’s tuition, I should seek after him. If I need a new car that will navigate snow, I should just pray for it.
So here’s my prayer: “Lord, you have always provided for me. I do not need anything fancy and trust you for whatever vehicle you want me to have. And I thank you for hearing my prayer.”
And while I believe in a God who does BIG things, I am not going to do a name-it-claim-it kind of prayer. It’s just a car. And I will be thankful for whatever God has for me.
Prayer is simple. We just ask. Nothing fancy. Nothing dramatic. No visions of grandeur. And when I pray these daily bread prayers, I always say, “Your will be done”…and then wait for him to answer, which he always does.
This article is brought to you by the Advanced Writers and Speakers Association (AWSA).
About the author: Janet McHenry is a national speaker and the author of 24 books—six on prayer, including the bestselling PrayerWalk: Becoming a Woman of Prayer, Strength and Discipline and her newest, The Complete Guide to the Prayers of Jesus: What Jesus Prayed and How It Will Change Your Life Today. She is the director of the prayer ministries of The Bridge Church in Reno, Sierra County (CA) coordinator for the National Day of Prayer, and creator of Prayer School, an online course in prayer. Janet loves to hear from readers: www.janetmchenry.com.
Join the conversation: What needs have you prayed about recently?