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Hey, y’all, I just started reading the book of Judges and from the first chapter it has changed my prayer life forever!!!
Who could have ever imagined that a simple request from a daughter to her father recorded in scriptures would set a profound pattern for prayer that every Christian should model. It begged the question, “How spiritual are my prayers?”
What does “spiritual” mean anyway? Just Google it, and you will get this: “relating to or affecting the human spirit or soul as opposed to material or physical things.” Whether you realize it or not, our prayers fall into these two categories – spiritual things and material/physical things.
Let’s back up for a minute and allow me to explain by going back to the daughter I mentioned earlier – Achsah and her daddy, Caleb, in Judges 1, starting at verse 9”
Afterward, the people of Judah went down to fight against the Canaanites who lived in the highlands, the southern plain,[a] and the western foothills.[b] 10 Judah moved against the Canaanites who lived in Hebron, known before as Kiriath-arba, and they defeated Sheshai, Ahiman, and Talmai. 11 From there they moved against those who lived in Debir, known before as Kiriath-sepher. 12 Caleb said, “I’ll give my daughter Achsah as a wife to the one who defeats and captures Kiriath-sepher.” 13 Othniel son of Kenaz, Caleb’s younger brother, captured it; so Caleb gave him his daughter Achsah as a wife. 14 When she arrived, she convinced Othniel to ask her father for a certain piece of land. As she got down from her donkey, Caleb said to her, “What do you want?”
15 Achsah said to Caleb, “Give me a gift. Since you’ve given me land in the southern plain, give me springs of water.” So Caleb gave her the upper and lower springs.”
This interesting and surprising little story is tucked inside a pretty boring passage of scripture where it goes on and on about unfamiliar land being divided among different tribes of people with complicated names. Suddenly, we read about Caleb securing a champion husband for his youngest child and only daughter, Achsah – a beloved daughter, as you can tell. Upon her wedding day, a dowry of south land is given.
No doubt this bride who was raised with a wise and skillful father and a slew of older brothers realizes that the gift is a parched land in desperate need of water in order to be of any real value. She approaches her father and asks for additional land that is well watered from springs, and he gladly blesses her with it.
As someone who loves to study the Bible, I just had to research the uniqueness of these words because stories like this in the holy scriptures have revelation meaning. There is a reason it is there, and I had to find out why. Commentaries from both Matthew Henry and Herbert Lockyer reference the correlation of her request to how we pray. I am a daughter of God who has no qualms about approaching my heavenly Father with requests. After all, I capture them and share them weekly with you on YouTube.
But the revelation of Judges 1:15 has got me evaluating how many of my requests are for the upper springs versus the lower springs. This land received water from both rain and springs on earth. I knew without taking inventory, the majority of my prayers were for material/physical things – the lower springs. I often pray for provision and healing whether it is for myself or others. But how often do I pray for spiritual things from the upper springs, like other’s salvation, reconciliation and restoration – spiritual blessings that affect the human spirit and soul? This is the challenge-pray for more spiritual things and tap into the upper springs.
This does not mean that I can’t pray for material, physical things of the lower springs, but a reminder to strike a balance for spiritual things. I accept the challenge. What about you???
Now, on to the video to hear more about some remarkable women of the Bible…
If you would like to join me, I am making lists of all kinds of things related to our spiritual life…
Gina Duke is the award-winning author of Organizing Your Prayer Closet: A New and Life-Changing Way to Pray (Abingdon Press), that introduces the gift of structured prayer journaling. You can enjoy her weekly #ShePrayerJournals weekend workshops on YouTube, and follower her on Twitter and Instagram at @TheGinaDuke.