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Susanna’s Apron and Sam’s Scarf!

This reflection has two parts. Brought together by a God-incidence (not coincidence!) Rachel began sharing a thought about Susanna Wesley. And Sam remembered her own practice of prayer when her children were little. 

Susanna’s Apron

Susanna Wesley was a busy woman. She home educated 10 children, was married to an Anglican minister, ran a household in the late 1600s and early 1700s (which was much more hard work than running a household today!) Even though Susanna was super busy she still always found time to speak to Jesu. And to teach her children about Him. She prayed that all her children would grow up to know Jesus as their best friend, just like He was her best friend. 

In amongst her busy day Susanna Wesley knew it was always imperative to make time for God, and to practice His presence all day, every day. One of her prayers reveals something of her expectation of God:

“Help me, Lord to remember that religion* is not to be confined to the church…nor exercised only in prayer and meditation, but that everywhere I am in thy presence.” (*‘Religion’ would have meant ‘faith’ in those times)

Susanna knew that God was not just for a Sunday morning when in church, or for those times when you have chance to be quiet and focus solely on God. She knew that in everyday life encountering God was not just possible, but vital! She expected it!! In amongst the busyness and chaos of a house with 10 children, Susanna would sometimes sit in the kitchen and pull her apron over her head and pray…her children knew when they saw the apron not to interrupt her unless it was an emergency.  

Do you expect to see God in everyday life? What is your equivalent of Susanna’s apron? 

Sam’s Scarf

When I heard of Susanna Wesley and her apron, I was inspired by her perseverance to remain in God’s presence and to pause, even when it seemed impossible to do so. For many years I was looking after our four children, working part-time and married to a part-time tutor who was also a part-time church leader and in the process of forming an international discipleship movement, and working. Finding a quiet time was a long way down the list of things to do every day. But I discovered that if I invited Jesus to help me in my daily chores, then we were always in one another’s presence. I started to chat to Jesus as I was hoovering the carpets, washing the dishes, walking home from the school run, pushing the shopping trolley/cart around the supermarket and so on.

Some days I wore a scarf to do the cleaning, and put it over my head as a sign that I was not to be disturbed! To be honest, the sight of the hoover was usually enough to keep the kids at bay! But I would also wear the scarf when I sat momentarily on the kitchen stool as a sign to me, as much as the kids, that I was giving my undivided attention to Jesus in that moment. 

My children are almost all left home, but I still have a scarf. It is a big rainbow coloured one. I wear it especially when I am travelling. It is my holy space as I go places. I wrap it around me like a big hug from God. I cover my head when I sleep and know I am under the shadow of Lord’s wings. I hold onto it as I leave family in one place to see them in another to remind me that Jesus is with me, and with them, always. 

Do you expect to see God in your life today, wherever you are and whatever you are doing? Do you have an apron, a scarf, an object to hold, an action to do, that would help to remind you that you are never out of Jesus presence? 

Rachel and Samantha are both Inspire Missioners, and co-editors of the Beacon of Hope and Inspire Prayer Bowl. You can send them your thoughts and stories of God in your life. They would love to hear from you:

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