Wednesday, July 21, 2010

July 21, 2010

There are many names for God. You probably have your own set of names you use to reference your God. Lately I have been calling the name Jehovah-Rapha which means the God that heals. When the children of Israel came to Marah, they found themselves in great trouble. The waters were bitter. They were dying of thirst. And they had nothing to drink. They seemed to be mocked. There was plenty of water, but not an ounce to drink. Then God intervened. He delivered them from their trouble by healing Marah’s bitter waters. The Lord our God has many ways by which he makes our bitter waters of trouble, sweet.

Tonight I received a moving email from a new friend. His name is Ralph and he is the son-in-law of one of my mom’s high school friends. They have managed to stay in touch all these years. Well, Ralph learned about mom’s battle and was moved to send me an email. His email tonight told me of how his congregation dedicated an entire hour of prayer today – just for my mom. Here is an excerpt from his email:

We had service tonight and a solid hour of prayer was dedicated for your mother. A solid hour of people on their knees in prayer, no fly by night stuff. This is just the beginning of the task before us. Your mother is prayed on constantly by myself and several others on a constant basis, every waking moment . First prayers of comfort and peace, freedom of pain and finally a removal of any and all sickness. A restoration of the mind body and spirit. Peace and freedom of the constant worry for family and friends. Be strong. In the middle of the night do not think of what may be, think of the blessing of having her here now. Stay positive. And in a more grand gesture, mind you not giving in to this situation, sometimes these words comfort me. Do not be sad because this is over, smile because it happened.

I’m not sure if I’ll be smiling right now because this happened but I do know that God allows things like this to happen. I’m not convinced he wants it to happen but when it does he sometimes allows it so that people may get a fuller understanding of who Jehovah-Rapha truly is. So they may know that God can heal. The reality of this earthly life is that God DOES answer prayer. It’s either YES, or WAIT, or NO. Of course we pray that God will answer yes and heal mom fully in this lifetime and in this place and in this space. To have absolute strangers praying God’s healing for you – it brings the world in closer to you.

Tonight I was watching my mom for awhile lying in bed, resting. I was totally struck by the role reversal and imagined how many times she and dad stood at my doorway when I was little and watched me. Then I walked to the other side of the bed and laid down. She woke up and we watched tv, we chatted a bit and held hands. Mom knows how much I love and adore her. And now as she continues to heal she knows that other people love her as well – even ones that have never met her. And no matter how powerful your position becomes, no matter how powerful your friends are, and no matter how powerful your political influences may be – nothing is stronger or can stand the winds of adversity like love can.

I close a lot of my greetings to my friends who have birthdays in this manner and I’ll use it to close this entry: may you be surrounded by people who love you.

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