Facetime: God, this is hopeless. Why should I even bother to pray?
She was a lovely lady with a voice that was sweet, winsome, and compelling. Of all the soloists at our church, she was my favorite. When she sang, the joy of God was so evident on her face that the song on her lips was merely an echo of what was in her heart.
My heart broke for her when our pastor announced she had been diagnosed with a cancer so rare no oncologist on the East Coast would treat her. Her only hope was a clinic in Texas, he explained, and she was leaving immediately. He invited us to join him in praying that God would do a miracle and spare her life.
When I heard his words, my heart sank. I knew she was going to die. The hopeless diagnosis and confirmation from the oncologists who wouldn't treat her sealed the inevitable in my heart.
Two years later she stood before our congregation cancer free and once again singing to the God who had healed her. She thanked everyone who had prayed for her. She was a living miracle.
And I had no part in it. I missed being a part of her miracle because I had not prayed in faith for her healing. Instead of believing the God who asked Jeremiah, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh. Is there anything too hard for me? (Jeremiah 32:27), I believed the doctors when they said there was no hope.
Instead of believing the God who said, If you have the faith of a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, be removed, (Matthew 17:20), I believed statistics that said her cancer was too advanced.
Instead of believing the God who said, Call unto me and I will answer you and show you great and mighty things that you do not know, (Jeremiah 33:3), I believed the reports that said she was beyond healing.
Was God able to heal this sister in Christ without my prayers? Obviously. My lack of faith did not hinder him in the least. God was more than able to fulfill his purpose for her without my help. This precious lady was not harmed in any way by my prayerlessness.
Of all the people involved in this scenario, I was the only loser. I had missed the chance to be part of a miracle. While I rejoiced in her healing and praised the God who had brought it about, I had no share in the victory because I had not believed.
I learned several powerful lessons that day. I learned that nothing is impossible for God. That he delights in working through the faith-filled prayers of His children. That nothing is sweeter than the victory that comes after doing battle on our knees. That when we unite our hearts in prayer around a common goal, God's incredible power is unleashed. And I learned that every prayer victory makes it easier to believe the next time.
I missed out on the chance to be part of a miracle that day, but I purposed in my heart that it would never happen again. Now, when someone invites me to pray, I say "Yes!" with all my heart. Never again will I miss being part of a miracle. I am the Lord, the God of all flesh. Is there anything too hard for me? Jeremiah 32:27
Lori Hatcher is an author, blogger, and women’s ministry speaker. She shares an empty nest in Columbia, South Carolina, with her ministry and marriage partner, David, and best dog ever, Winston. Her latest book, Hungry for God . . . Starving for Time, 5-Minute Devotions for Busy Women, helps women connect to God in the craziness of life. You’ll find her pondering the marvelous and the mundane on her blog, Hungry for God. . . Starving for Time (www.lorihatcher.com).
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