“Forever I will sing the goodness of the Lord!” (Prayer Changes Things)

As I write these few words I am reminded of what we learned many years ago in a homiletics class. Our professor told us to preach and teach what you know. And so in this column I am writing about something I do know about; the power of prayer.

This period between Thanksgiving eve and Christmas time has been a trying time for our family. I’m sure that many of you have been through trying times as well and so I know you can relate to our particular story. It began with a midnight trip to the emergency room. My wife was experiencing excruciating pain in her abdomen and back.

I mean she was really hurting. They gave her some pain medication and sent us home at 3:00 am. Six hours later we were back in the ER. She had begun to bleed internally and the severe pain continued. They did a CT scan and as they laid her down for the scan, she aspirated. That is, some of what was coming up was sucked into her lungs and she quit breathing. They rushed her to the stabilization room where they put a tube in her throat and hooked her up to a ventilator. Her heart rate was so high that they had to “shock” her twice. We almost lost her. Somehow she survived all of this and was placed in ICU on the ventilator unable to breathe on her own and was sedated and unconscious for three days. At some point she aspirated again and was again able to get through it.

The doctors knew that she needed surgery to repair damages done to her stomach and esophagus by a hiatal hernia. They wanted to wait a couple of weeks to let her stomach lining heal.

The Friday night following the second visit to the ER and Laurel was basically unconscious in ICU, I got a phone call at 3:00 am that my mother had died. She had been in a nursing home for several years and was currently receiving hospice care. She was 95 and it was certain that eventually she would pass. The timing was atrocious. The next day I drove to Annandale to make the arrangements for Mom’s funeral along with my five brothers, while my wife was in ICU being scheduled for emergency surgery, the doctors said it couldn’t wait.

There’s a lot more to this story and someday I may share that too, but the point I want to make is again about the power of prayer. In a conservative estimate I would say there were several hundred people praying for us during this whole double feature episode of our lives. I know without a doubt that the only reason my wife is still alive today is because God hears and answers our prayers; your prayers and ours. He is faithful …...and He will do it!

Prayer changes things.

“Forever I Will Sing The Goodness Of The Lord!”

The surgery was successful and after three full weeks in

the hospital, Laurel is now recovering at home with me.

Praise the Lord! A blessed New Year to you all,

Deacon Steve

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