Praying for a miracle

If I were my friends Julie and Tony I’m not sure how I would be doing if I were given two months to live. I can’t imagine what Tony must be going through knowing that his wife, best friend, and mother of his children has been given no hope of living. The wind has been knocked out of me. All I can do is pray. My heart aches and my soul cries out to the living God for his power to fill the lives of my friends and to bring about restoration and healing to Julie. If Deb were given two months to live I do not know what I would do. I do not know how I would tell my kids. I remember when I worked in the oncology unit at a Pennsylvania hospital during my chaplaincy while attending seminary and the wide range of emotions I experienced as I was asked to enter room after room of folks who were told they had cancer. I remember the morning that I sat and watched a family say good bye to a loving father and husband as they watched him breathe his last breath. One the experiences I had I still remember like yesterday is when I was asked by a man who had been given only a short time to live because of his cancer diagnosis that if I had any answers. It was one of my first ever visits as a chaplain at this hospital. I walked in and introduced myself as one of the hospitals chaplains. We began a short conversation which went something like this…

“Good morning John, my name is K.C. and I’m one of the hospitals chaplains.” I’m here to bring you greetings this morning.” The mans response to me caught me off guard. He says, “any answers?” as he looked up at me waiting to see what I would say. As I stood there praying that the Lord would teach me and fill me with great wisdom which I had never had before in my life, there was a long period of silence. We both stared into the quiet of his room. I wanted to run out screaming myself. As I stood in silence by this mans bed, I had recalled learning from some old pastor friends that quiet was sometimes the best kind of pastoral care a person could receive. I also learned that if I tried to fill the quiet with meaningless attempts at trying to respond to this mans question that I would find myself in a situtation that I was not at all equipped theologically or pastorally to deal with as a young pastor in training. I had never ever been asked this question by anyone who was going through a life threatening and life ending event. All I could muster up and knowing that the Holy Spirit was the only way this man would get what he needed from me at the moment, I responded by saying “nope, no answers.” The man responded by saying to me, “good job kid, good answer.” All I wanted to do was cry.

I have no answers to why my friend Julie, a godly and spirit filled mother is about to die. I have no answers to why a godly father and husband might loose his wife, his best friend, and that his children will possibily loose their mom. What I do know is that both of these folks have more faith right now than I have. I ask if you read this that you please pray for a miracle. A life changing miracle. Prayer seems to be the only answer at this point and as I learned from my pastor friends about silence and pastoral care and what the Psalmist David said about being still in the presence of the shalom of God, I will be queit. I will pray for a miracle.

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