Grandmama Reel, as we called her, was a very energetic, hard-working woman. She would get up at 4:00 in the morning and boil a hen for lunch, then put on her wide brim hat and make her way to the chicken coop out back to gather the warm eggs. After that, she would don her patched apron and head for the barn to help with the crop. She rarely sat down to rest, and then only to read her Bible or watch an occasional game show on television. She faithfully attended church as far back as I can remember and had the reputation of being a fine Christian in her community.

During the summer, my older sister and I would often go and stay with my grandparents and teen age aunt to do a little work with them on the farm or help with the spring cleaning. I loved being at Grandmama’s house. She had a nightly routine. After making sure we were safely tucked into the sofa bed in her bedroom , she would turn off the lights. There would be a long period of silence before we would hear her crawl into bed. I imagined what she might be doing during that time in the darkness, removing her robe, tucking her hair in the thin net she wore on her head or applying some lotion to her worn face. But none of those things took very long.

One night, my aunt returned from a date right before Grandmama would have turned off the light. Excited to be able to finally see what she was doing, I peeked above the covers as she moved over to the bed, knelt down, folding her hands and began to pray silently. Though I didn’t hear her words, I knew that she was talking to God about her needs and praying for her family, naming us one by one. I felt so blessed at that moment, and whenever my thoughts go back to that night, when I saw my grandmother on her knees, praying for me.

In 1 Corinthians 13:7, Paul tells the church, “Now I pray to God that ye do no evil.” How many times would we have been pulled into sin if it were not for the prayers of our grandmothers or others? I shudder when I think of the poor choices I have made or times I have fallen. By the grace of God I was rescued from harm, maybe because of the prayers my dear grandmother prayed for me. Now I’m a grandmother, and I am following in her sweet steps. In this cruel, wicked, world our family members are greatly in need of someone interceding for them.

How much time do you spend in prayer for your family?