I will give them a heart to know me, that I am the Lord.
They will be my people, and I will be their God, for they will return to me with all their heart.
~ Jeremiah 24:7
Several years ago, I was deeply struck by the Mel Gibson film, “The Man Without A Face,” the story of a severely-burned and disfigured professor (Gibson) hiding away in a coastal town — and the tender mentorship that grows into a surrogate dad/son bond between Gibson and a lonely boy, beautifully…perceptively… played by a new young actor named Nick Stahl. I’ve seen Stahl’s name appear on credits in ensuing years, though I’ve never followed his career. Just always remembered him from “Without A Face”… And how I also remember praying for him back then, so larger-than-life on the big screen, but recognizing a vulnerable young man, still but a boy in a man’s world. That God would keep and lead him…
That’s something I’ve found myself doing since childhood… praying for the actors while I’m watching their performances. Especially child actors, because I know it’s often a tough road for them. Somehow always having a heart for those in Hollywood…
That’s why an Internet news headline leapt out at me a few weeks ago…catching me.
Actor Nick Stahl, missing, foul play feared.
I clicked and read the back story. Estranged from his wife and retaining supervised visits with his baby daughter, Mr. Stahl…now in his thirties… had been missing for a few days. His wife had reported it…fearing for his safety… knowing his ongoing struggle with addictions.
Oohhh…. I breathed, sorrowfully. In my mind I saw his expressive young face in Gibson’s film. And the face of another young man personally close to my heart who was lost to that drug world years ago. Lord, keep Nick safe, I instinctively began praying. You know where he is.
He tends to hang out sometimes in skid row… his wife said, imploring police to check there. But the numbers there are too vast…
Lead him to You and to help, Lord…
Then… days later… the news reported he had contacted his wife by e-mail, apologized for worrying those who love him, confided that he has placed himself in rehab for thirty days without contact.
Knowing the changing heart struggle in these situations, I pray that is true.
And I thought of this little corner of prayer. Will you join me in praying for the following today?
- Father, be with Nick Stahl, wherever he is right now. So much brokenness. So much keeping him bound. Thank you that he is reaching for help. Hold him close and snap those chains off of him forever now, O Lord, setting him free from each and every addiction, from depression. Completely deliver him from whatever sorrow or self loathing or abuse or deep insecurities may have led him to this path and pour the light of your love over him and his family. I pray the promise of Jeremiah 24:7 and Ephesians 3:14-20… that he will know You… and the depth, height, breadth of your Love for him. Restore his marriage, his family, and the life You created him to know. Tenderize his heart with love overflowing for You beyond his imagination, and a knowing that You will never let him go. Keep him and protect him, and send Your ministering holy angels to stand guard around him and his family. Send friends to him who will support and strengthen him in You…
- Lord, I also want to lift M. to You… Another young man who needs Your wisdom, Your discernment in his life, especially as he forms his core friendships. His mom confided her deeply felt prayers for his safety in You, protection from making alliances that could lead him away from You. Her concerns are Yours Lord, I know. They are justified and led by You. And I stand with her in prayer… drawing a circle of Your light, Your life, Your blood protection all around him. Deepen his heart in You, O Lord… with Jeremiah 24:7 as Your shield around him…in every choice and path he takes. Surround him with those who know and love You, establishing his closest friends in a bond of Your love. And give his mom peace to know… he is in the circle of Your care…and You will lead his heart along Your paths.
No evil shall befall you, nor shall any plague come near your dwelling; for He shall give His angels charge over you, to keep you in all your ways.
Do you have someone or something you are praying for today? Leave a comment so we may join with you too!