Children’s Story – The Night Dad Prayed

Back in 1956 we lived way out in the country, and at the time, we didn’t have a car to get around. If we went anywhere, we either had to depend on relatives or neighbors to take us to town, or we would have to walk. We were always very poor. We didn’t have any way to go to and from church, so every once in a while a preacher would come to visit and to minister to all of us, but my dad would go out to the workshop and stay out there until the preacher would leave. Then he would come back to the house.

Well, one day the preacher came to the house, and Dad didn’t have a chance to get away from him like the other times when he had come. The preacher got to minister to him a little bit that day, but Dad still didn’t seem ready to really listen to him yet. All he would say to the preacher would be “You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make him drink.” For years and years that was all he would say whenever someone would try to talk to him about the Lord.

One day a neighbor let my dad use his car to go to town to get some groceries. He didn’t have too much money to buy groceries; course we never had much money, but it was enough to get us by, so he took off early in the afternoon. The rest of the family, along with myself, had finished doing our chores, finished our supper, and it was starting to get dark, but Dad still hadn’t made it home. My mother was starting to get worried, but she wouldn’t let on to the rest of us. Course, we knew something had to be wrong, because Dad had never done anything like that before.

Everyone finally went to bed except for Mother; she sat up and worked on her crocheting—she always had something like that going. I guess it was about three o’clock in the morning when Dad finally got home, carrying all the groceries, which was five full bags. We couldn’t figure out just how he managed to carry all that stuff, but the next day he told all of us the story.

He said he started from town and only went four miles out of town when the car broke down. He didn’t know what to do, so he waited and waited for someone to come by, but to no avail. So he said he got on his knees and prayed to God. Dad said he didn’t know whether God would answer him or not, but he had to try.

While he was praying, he said something was telling him to pick up the bags. He said he didn’t think he would have the strength to be able to carry all the bags, but he picked up all five bags and started out for home. He continued walking until he arrived home. When he arrived home, he said he wasn’t even tired. He also told us that the bags never, ever got too heavy for him to carry, and he did not have to set them down at all. The only way he could have walked the eleven miles home, carrying those full bags of groceries, was with help from God!

From that night on, my dad’s favorite Bible text was Matthew 17:20: “If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you.”