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I'm going to share something gritty, real, and raw about my life with you.
My older brother is a life long drug addict. He's been in and out of rehab and jail multiple times. He's lost his job and his house.
I have held hope that each time he's really kicked the habit. And each time he's begun using again, I tell myself I should have known. I tell myself he has the power to change and it's his choices that have got him where he is today. And that's true.
But as much as I don't understand his addiction, I've felt superior to him. I've comforted myself with the fact I would never allow myself to walk the road he's chosen.
And last night, I saw him at a belated family Christmas party. I haven't seen him in over a year.
But I saw something else. I saw a man who wanted to be around his family. A man who needs love. A man who Jesus Christ died on a cross for, even though Jesus knew the path my brother would choose. And Jesus loves him, loves him beyond the things he's done and the choices he's made.
And so do I. I wrapped my arms around him and told him I loved him.
Then I asked him if I could pray for him. He said yes. So in a room filled with probably over 60 extended family members, with stereo blasting and kids weaving between tables and chairs, I pulled my brother in a hug and I prayed out loud for God to protect Him, for the Holy Spirit to speak to Him and work in his heart, even when I had to push the words past the tears burning my throat.
He turned to me and said “You're going to make me cry.” And I told him that was all right. Then he left.
I don't know if he'll ever beat addiction, but I know that my prayer meant something. And that if I never see him again, I won't regret loving and praying with Him.
But I would have regretted not praying with him. I would have regretted not listening to that still small voice of the Holy Spirit, because it was me who was changed last night.
God allowed me to see an addict through His eyes, not through my own. I'm tearing up as I write this, because of how God has humbled me.
So I share this with you to show you that God can work through any situation to show us a part of Him if we open ourselves up to the Holy Spirit.
Is there any area of your life that God's convicted you?
This post will show you how to pray effectively pray intercessory prayers.
Melissa K. Norris inspires people's faith and pioneer roots with her books, podcast, and blog. Melissa lives with her husband and two children in their own little house in the big woods in the foothills of the North Cascade Mountains. When she's not wrangling chickens and cattle, you can find her stuffing Mason jars with homegrown food and playing with flour and sugar in the kitchen.