Wednesday, January 05, 2011
Good to the Last Drop! by guest blogger Delia Latham
No, I’m not kidding. I was given permission to talk about whatever I choose on this post today, so…I want to discuss anointing oil.
In Destiny’s Dream, the first book in my Solomon’s Gate series, the heroine is a firm believer in the power of this amazing additive to heartfelt, genuine prayer. At the end of every day in the dating agency, she kneels at her desk to pray over that day’s applications—to ask God’s guidance in pairing two hearts. Before taking her petitions to the throne, however, she anoints each application with oil.
This is not a new thing. A crucial part of biblical history, anointing oil played important roles in the lives of the children of Israel. God gave specific instructions as to ingredients and use. He provided different “recipes” for different purposes. Certain rituals were connected with its use, and God expected strict adherence to His instructions in regard to those rituals. Once His conditions were met, however, anointing oil became a powerful connection between His children and Himself.
It still is.
In the Old Testament, this medium—referred to as “holy anointing oil,” was used for a variety of purposes. It played a part in preparing the dead for burial; priests were anointed at certain times, by pouring oil over their heads. An anointed priest was considered to be wearing “the crown of the anointing oil of his God”; kings were anointed prior to taking the throne; the tabernacle and the vessels within it were anointed to make them holy. In the New Testament, it didn’t see quite so many uses, but it was still a common practice under certain circumstances: in preparation for burial, when welcoming important guests, and when praying for healing of the sick.
It’s as if the very aroma of the oil wafts its way to Heaven, reaches God’s nostrils and draws His attention to the need being addressed. As if making the extra effort of applying oil earns some kind of heavenly “brownie point,” if I may be so inelegant. It gives God a heads-up. “Hey, Dad…it’s me. Your kid. I’ve got a situation here, and I sure could use Your help.”
He smells the oil, and his ears perk up. His senses go on all-alert. His heart swells with love. The natural instinct of a protective, caring, loving Dad rises up within Him. The Creator of the Universe charges in, in full battle array, to defend…protect…heal…whatever the need is. He’s on it.
Through Destiny’s story, God opened my eyes to the power of anointing with oil. He used a fictional heroine in a made-up story set in a non-existent California town to give me the key to very real, as-yet-untold riches.
I grew up in a Christian environment. From a very young age, I watched my pastor anoint the sick with oil before he prayed over them. But I never thought about why he did that. Some members of our congregation used to anoint the doors and windows of their homes when they moved into them, to invite in God’s presence and drive out anything unholy that might be lurking within. I had heard about this practice, but I didn’t inquire into the purpose behind the gesture. I failed to grasp the tremendous power being harnessed and put into action right before my eyes.
Have you considered the possibilities God has opened up for you? Are you adding this amazing “secret” ingredient to your prayers?
As for me, Destiny May taught me to pray more effectively. She showed me the unlimited heights that can be reached, the miracles that can be wrought through the power of prayer coupled with anointing oil.
Try it. It’s good to the last drop!
Is a little respect too much to ask at a parent’s funeral?
Apparently it is for Destiny May. Clay Gallagher is built like a small mountain and far more vocal than is fitting when he shows up late to her mother’s “going away party.” When it turns out he’s not even at the right funeral, Destiny demands retribution in the form of an escape from the day’s dreary proceedings. Spending time with a handsome stranger who makes her laugh is more therapeutic than fighting with her overbearing family.
Clay finds Destiny beautiful, charming...and intelligent. So why is she stubbornly determined to open a Christian dating service? Clay has little respect for such a frivolous profession, and doesn’t think the small, conservative town of Castle Creek will welcome such a progressive business. But when Destiny is threatened by an anonymous caller who deeply resents her and what she does for a living, Clay makes it his business to keep the saucy redhead out of harm’s way.
Trouble is, spending time in her company weakens his defenses, and Destiny may be the one thing Clay can’t escape...if he even wants to.