February 9, 2023 / by Pastor Justin Waples
Doc McStuffins is a children’s cartoon premiering in 2012 about a young girl named Dottie who is a doctor to her toys and stuffed animals.
The series chronicles freckled, seven-year-old Dottie “Doc” McStuffins, who decides she wants to become a doctor like her mom. She practices for her dream job by fixing toys and dolls. When she activates her magic stethoscope, it causes toys, dolls, and stuffed animals to come to life. They can move, speak, sing songs, pick up things, hear, see, and smell odors, and she can interact with them.
With help from her stuffed animals Stuffy the Dragon, Hallie the Hippo, Lambie the Lamb, and Chilly the Snowman, Doc helps toys recover by giving them check-ups and diagnosing their fictional illnesses with an encyclopedia called “The Big Book of Boo-Boos”. Problems include Loose-Tooth-eosis (AKA broken tooth), Can’t-squeak-otis (AKA broken squeaker), Stuffanemia (AKA Stuffing leaking out), and Left Behind-itis (AKA being left alone). These are just some of the many challenges she faces.
Sometimes we can get a case of what we call Insider-itis (AKA not seeing our neighbors as people God has called us to pray for). There are several symptoms of Insider-itis, such as a lack of compassion, busyness fever, ministry myopia, spiritual amnesia, swollen head, lack of humility, and fiery tongue. However, our Lord, the true Physician, has equipped us to see beyond the needs of our own lives to notice the needs of others around us. So, what should we do, and how can we pray?
First, we need to pray for wisdom to rethink how we act toward outsiders. Colossians 4:5 says, “ Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time.” Consider praying for each home out your front window or down your country road and fervently ask God to allow you to serve them and for you to be open to their care.
Second, we need to pray for compassion. Jesus says in Matthew 9:37-38, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.” God’s love for us will overflow to our neighbors if we trust Him and lift them up in prayer, but our indifference will find an excuse to leave them alone.
Lastly, we need to pray for availability. 2 Corinthians 5:20 says, “ Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ.” We are designed to be ambassadors for Christ, the very aroma of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing. We can’t pray for and connect with our neighbors if we’re unavailable. Consider how you could engage with your neighborhood through prayer and ask God to help you become more available to your neighbors in times of need.
Pastor Justin Waples is East White Oak’s Outreach and Discipleship pastor. He is married to Abigail and they are blessed with four children. Justin is passionate about equipping the saints for ministry and helping each member reach out to their neighbors and community.
February OakLeaf Articles:
Prayer as Fellowship with God by Pastor Scott Boerckel
Prayer in Children’s Ministry by the Children’s Ministry Team
Engaging Your Neighbors Through Prayer by Pastor Justin Waples
Prayer for Your Pastors by Richard Verdery
Prayer in Moments of Crisis by Jeff Fritzen
Praying for Prodigals by Jeoff Jenkins
Prayer as Worship by Meg White
Prayer for Refreshing Our Building and our Hearts by Dave Rowden
Praying in Jesus’ Name by Dr. Jeff VanGoethem
Resources for Your Prayer Journey by Monica Ball
Prayer Questions and Conundrums by David Congdon