In the past, I had always been a big believer in the “Power of Prayer”. One of the best examples I have of prayer working in my life, was back when I was living in Virginia. I was a full time volunteer with Habitat for Humanity. I had a place to live for free, however it was about 30 minutes from work and 45 minutes from the church I was going to so I wanted to find some place closer. One Sunday at Church, they were doing a baby dedication. It was a non-denomination church, so they did not do baby baptisms. The baby girl was 7 months old, and had 20 month old twin brothers. Dad was going over seas for 6 months with the Navy leaving mom alone. I decided to pray for that family, and asked God to send someone to help her. A couple of weeks later, I had gone to a potential house for me to live in. However, she could not let me live there for free, and I could not afford the rent. She said she would “pray for me” – I wasn’t holding up much hope. However a few days later I got a phone call from a woman who had gotten my name from the woman I had visited. She invited me to come to her house and see if it would work for us to live together. Wouldn’t you know, it was the woman I had prayed for a couple weeks before in church! God had sent ME to be the one to help her! I lived with that family for about 9 months. I got free rent in exchange for helping out with the children when I was not working. The 20 month old twins started College this year, and the 7 month old girl is in high school with her eyes set on being a Veterinarian when she heads off to college. Another baby came about a year after I left!
So, I have seen prayer work in wonderful ways. But when Alexander got sick – things changed for me. We had many people praying for him, praying that he would be cured. But, those prayers were not answered. I have heard it said that God answers all prayers, but sometimes the answer is “NO”. I don’t know why our Alexander was not healed from his horrible illness, but others have been. Cancer is a horrible disease – and some people respond to treatment and others do not. But, I do NOT believe that God is up there going “yes, for this one, no for this one – well, maybe sort of for now, but I am going to send the cancer back in a few years”.
So – how do we pray for people in times of great illness? I have thought about those that need say a heart transplant. Sure, you want to pray that a heart will be “found”, but the only way for a heart to be found is for someone ELSE to die! How do you pray for that? Not an easy prayer by any means.
Many people wondered how we “did it” – kept our energy and strength going while Alexander was so sick. I like to think it was the people praying for us. It was their prayers, for our day to day lives that kept us going. Each day was such a challenge for us. Even on the “good” days we were always waiting for the next thing to happen – wondering not IF but WHEN we would have to go back to the hospital again.
When I pray now for those that are still fighting the battle against STUPID CANCER – I pray for peace and strength. Each day is a challenge – every choice is a challenge. Do we consent to this test? Do we ask for a second opinion? Is that opinion right? Do we have the surgery? Do we not have the surgery? Do we turn off the machines and let them go? None of the choices families with a sick loved one are easy – and no matter what the choice, you always wonder if you made the right choice or not.
So – go out PRAY – pray for those in need – pray for those that don’t have anyone to pray for them. Pray for PEACE and STRENGTH for all those that are fighting.