And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, if ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place: and it shall remove: and nothing shall be impossible unto you.
Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting. - Matt. 17:20-21.In January 1969, I entered the Language Training Mission to study Spanish for my mission call to Northern Argentina.
Due to the Vietnam War, our group studied Spanish for only eight weeks, rather than 12 weeks. The eight weeks flew by quickly and I still felt ill prepared.
During my first weeks in Argentina, my letters home spoke of my excitement to be out in the field but how frustrated I felt in not being able to communicate effectively.
While struggling with the language barrier, I began to wonder if I would ever grasp the language. Early one Wednesday morning, things began to click and my confidence and courage soared as I felt a proficiency in speaking. At noon, I hurriedly scrawled a note to my parents, sharing my joy at this breakthrough and for them not to worry about me. I mailed the note in the afternoon, knowing they would get it the following Wednesday. The following Wednesday I was sure they, too, knew of my new success.
On that same Wednesday, I also received a letter from my mother. It read. "Dear Son, I know how important it is for you to speak to the people in Argentina. So, I have been fasting this day for your success so that you will be blessed with the gift of tongues. We continue to pray for your success. Love Mom."
I was struck by the power and example of my mother's fasting and prayer. The admonition of Jesus to His disciples concerning the need for fasting and prayer to overcome difficulties, reminds me of my need to rely on the Lord for help.