We are now fully into Autumn – the leaves are changing colors, the air is growing colder, and the holidays are fast-approaching.  Yet the world is still in a state of chaos,

Jones Onigbinde

Jones Onigbinde – Great Mother Heart …

as we are reminded constantly between social media and the news.  In the face of the deluge of images and messages intended to panic or incite, it’s very easy to lose hope and become overwhelmed. 

We’re very rarely shown the inspirational and heart-warming stories that are happening right now, across the world, by normal people going about their every day lives.  Stories of heroism, random acts of kindness from strangers.  People coming together in prayer and faith and working towards a brighter future. 

For every horrible thing we’re shown or told, there are dozens of other stories of hope and inspiration – that don’t fit the current narrative or don’t offer as many opportunities for a “viral” moment.  It’s more important than ever to shore up your faith, reconnect or strengthen your connection to the message and comfort of God.  Remind yourself and others of the power of prayer, food for the soul.   

On pages 60-61 of my book, Great Mother Heart, I write:

Imagine yourself living in a mud-house with a mother and five siblings. A mud-house that doesn’t have a proper roof, or proper walls. Our house was broken on one side: it was like we were inside, but still outside, because there was no wall on one side of the house. We survived on a less than the equivalent of one-dollar-a-day income, for the whole family. Imagine, coming from a place like that and ending up graduating university.

Most of the kids in my village couldn’t have even imagined ending up the way I did. I did everything with complete honesty, all because of the farsightedness, perseverance, dedication, love, support, dreams, and, of course, the prayers of my mother. I could go on and on praising the woman who raised me and instilled into me the values that made me who I am today – but this chapter is about prayer, and everything I learned about it from my mother, so I’ll just focus on that.

Prayer is the purest and easiest form and way to connect and communicate with God. Whether you are uttering a need for help or just pouring your heart out to Him, prayer draws its significance from the fact that God is listening to you. And the Lord said, “If you abide in me and my words abide in you, ask whatever you will, and it shall be done for you.” (John 15:7)

The power of a mother’s love and sacrifice for her children is second only to the power of prayer.  I know not everyone was lucky enough to have the parental support I had. To those who suffered through neglect, abuse, or indifference … I sincerely hope you’ve found a way to break the cycle and become that beacon of support for your children that you should have had. Take a few moments this holiday season to give thanks for the good things, acknowledge the bad things, and let them go. Connect with others, raise your voice in song, and remember, there is great comfort in faith and prayer and more importantly, remember the words of our Lord Jesus Christ in Matthew 11:28- 30 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” In turbulent times, there is hope and rest in Christ.