by LuAnn Mudrak
I’m reading this devotion today about being stronger on my knees. It’s an interesting devotion by Phebe Gamata Crismo from the Philippines.
Having put all five of us children and all our belongings into the cart, my father helped my mother get onto the carabao (water buffalo) and led us back to his church assignment about five kilometers across the river. It was raining hard, and the trail was muddy, knee-deep in some places. Father prodded the carabao to go faster because we had to cross the river before it became impassable. Going up the riverbank on the steep and slippery trail was difficult. Suddenly, my younger brother cried out, “Father, look! The carabao is kneeling. It can’t pull us up anymore!” Father looked back at us in the cart. “Don’t worry, son. The carabao is strongest when it kneels.”
I watched the carabao as it struggled on the slippery trail one step at a time. It would stop, kneel, strain, get up slowly and pull, until we were over the top. The carabao’s strength came from kneeling, just as Father had said. Each time it knelt, it pulled us up farther and faster.
That was many years ago. I often think of the carabao as I pass through difficult times in my personal life. I, too, have discovered extraordinary strength when I get down on my knees.
Now I’ve only seen pictures of a water buffalo. They are very large animals and, obviously, very strong. I can’t imagine, first of all, wading across a river with five children and belongings. I can’t imagine doing it in the pouring rain. I can’t imagine trusting a large animal to get all of us up the other side. Wouldn’t you worry that the animal would lose its footing and we’d all roll into the water? That would be my first thought.
The Father was an amazing example of trust in God and that animal. He knew the animal would kneel down and keep going, muddy, rainy or not. Can we do that in our lives? Can we trust the God we kneel down to pray to? Can we trust the God who will get us through even the rainy times in life?
The verse attached to this devotion is Daniel 6:10 “Daniel knelt down, prayed, and praised his God three times (each) day.” Some days, God is lucky to hear from me one time a day. There isn’t a legitimate reason to forget about Him. I just do. It’s easy to go to Him with problems but not as easy to praise Him.
I have much to be thankful for. All of us do.
So, today, think about that carabao and the strength it had as long as it went to its knees. Realize that nothing is impossible with God—NOTHING. Praise Him for all you have and all He will provide.