A friend called this morning with exciting news. She had just received a job offer. As she shared the news, I got misty-eyed and here's why -- we had agreed to pray about her job situation. This same friend had called me earlier this week, sharing her struggles with her current work situation that leaves her in tears at the end of every long day. On the phone, we talked about God calling us to specific places for specific times, though His ways be unknown to us. The only purpose my friend could derive from her current situation is one professional client who seems to appreciate her. We don't know the details of that client's life. Perhaps she needs a bit of encouragement from my friend, someone to believe in her and point her in the right direction. Perhaps we'll never know how God has used my friend in her current situation. Regardless, before we ended our phone call, we agreed to pray about her job situation.
When my friend called today, I teared up because God confirmed, once again, that He hears us when we pray. He hears me when I pray. I'd been discouraged in this area lately (more on that later) and I know I ought not need answered prayers to confirm that God hears us. Scripture confirms the same. Still, we humans appreciate hands-on, experiential learning and that's what our merciful Father provided.
Getting back to my recent discouragement ... the daughter of one of my husband's youth group friends has a brain tumor and her family has requested prayer
. Elle's situation brings up many emotions and parallels to my brother's situation. For those new to my website, a quick background from me will prove helpful. My brother, Tim, was in an ultimately fatal car accident two years ago. Between his accident and his passing, his traumatized brain swelled beyond the capacity of his skull. On the morning of his passing, surgeons removed half his skull to make room for his swelling brain. His heart could not endure the additional strain and he died from cardiac arrest.
Reading of the increasing pressure on Elle's brain returns me immediately to those intermittent days when we awaited Tim's outcome. In prayer today, I face the same struggles I faced when praying for Tim. What is God's will? How do I pray in accordance with God's will? Should I pray for complete healing and believe for the same, even if it means another great disappointment? What if what we feel we "need" turns out to only be a deep, deep want? (To any family and friends of Elle, I ask only for grace as you read this. We are all beautiful messes trying to figure out life and God though His ways be unfathomable.) Jesus commands us to seek and knock
. He commends the widow's persistence
. Might He not also commend our obedience if we pray in the face of daunting prospects?
On a simple scale, His response to my friend's situation confirmed that He does hear our prayers and He does answer. Of course, we know His answers sometimes differ from our wants and expectations. Nonetheless, He answers. In this, He is faithful. He is also faithful to complete that which brings Him most glory but delving into that subject shall wait for another time.