Heroic Prayer

HeroicPrayerMy son loves when I tell him a story before he goes to bed. I like to think it is because he thinks I am an excellent story teller, but the truth is he simply knows that he can stay up for those last few minutes if I tell him one.

Sometimes, it is a story from his Children’s Bible, and other times it is more of a biographical tale of something that happened when I was a child. Lately, I have made up children’s stories. They usually have a hidden lesson. He loves it when I make them up.

Two nights ago, I made up a story that was loosely based on another story I heard when I was young. You may have heard a similar version, but the story was about a man who prayed and asked God to make him strong. This man prayed and prayed because he was a weak man who really wanted supernatural strength. He desired to be a superhero (my boy loved that prayer). Everyday, God told this man to go outside and push on the same large boulder. This boulder was immovable, and each day this man became more and more frustrated because he could not move it. He questioned what the point was if it could not be moved. He was also frustrated because he had to walk a long way through the woods to get to this boulder. Daily, his body would ache as he attempted to push this rock. He would wake up every morning sore and dreading the next attempt. He continued to obey, though.

After 3 months of this strenuous routine, this man became angry with God and decided to stop praying for this transformation. He believed God was good, and that He could do anything…he was just tired of praying. He pledged to God, however, that he would do it one more time. So, he began his trek through the woods to find the large boulder.

He was halfway to his destination when he heard a weak cry for help. He moved around to see where the cry was coming from and he noticed it became louder near a large hole in the ground. He looked in the hole and saw a little boy who had fell and was hurt. The man reached down and easily pulled the boy to safety. The man soon realized that his months of pushing made him stronger than he ever was. God had answered his prayer. He was a hero.

Sometimes we feel so helpless that we forget that God is working in our lives. We focus on our inadequacies. It is His strength, mercy, and power that matter…not our might or understanding.

Never stop praying. Even when it seems like the object in front of you seems immovable. Perhaps God is changing you while you are praying for the situation to change. Keep pushing.

Love you all.

-Landon DeCrastos

The Secret Desires of a Human Pastor

For the most part, my blog posts are meant to inspire, encourage and provoke thought in those who read it. As we are ending 2013, I want to thank all of you who read/ follow my writings. I hope you and your family see God at work in a special way this coming year. Also, even if this last year was not the most memorable, I encourage you to take time to reflect about how God has provided and protected you.

Today, I want to write something a little different. I want to write something fun and light-hearted. I want to tell you all some things I have thought about for many years, but have never shared publicly.

Many people have the misguided notion that pastors sit around all day in empty, quite rooms reading and getting excited about the newest Greek or Hebrew word they just learned. Sometimes this is true, but like any other person, we have crazy desires that we secretly wish would come true but feel silly about revealing them. I would like to share a very short list of some secret desires I have had in my lifetime.

Here it goes…don’t judge me.

1. I have secretly wanted to sing with an a capella group– I know what you are thinking. “This guy must be a great singer“. Nope. Just something I have always wanted to do. I did, however, enjoy the opportunity of being in an a capella group in college. We were called “Undeniable”. We did a lot of practicing and one gig at a church in Michigan. Perhaps you heard of us and have wondered where this stellar group went…..Well, the world just wasn’t ready for us.

2. I have secretly wanted to learn parkour (free running)Look it up. It is pretty fantastic. I’m not sure how many people, in their minds, connect me with speed and agility but that’s okay. I may have been built more for liberal arts but it is a desire nonetheless.

3. I have secretly wanted to be a voice actor for a cartoon– I used to love mimicking voices when I was a child and equally loved watching cartoons. When I watch Veggie Tales (yes I do watch Veggie Tales) I think about how fun it would be to record in that way.

4. I have secretly wanted to record a children’s audiobook– This desire has come to the surface within the last several months. It is one I would like to accomplish to honor a friend who I lost recently to cancer. Janis Hires was a great inspiration to me and her personality and loving spirit was contagious. This desire was actually her life dream, and I would like to do it to fulfill her dream.

5. I have secretly wanted to learn more languages– One of these is American Sign Language. I have been inspired and encourage by people in my past who have deaf family members, or who have led deaf ministries. It is a beautiful language. I am also interested in Arabic.

6. I have secretly wanted to own an RV– The freedom of travel while still having the comforts of home is something that is appealing to me.

7. I have secretly wanted to be a superhero Shut up and keep scrolling…..

Perhaps some of you have similar desires. It is fun to day dream and there is nothing wrong with it. God gave us an imagination and He delights when we use it.