Sometimes my kids catch me off guard with something they say, and really make me laugh. It seems that my boys are really the best at doing this. Most of their jokes I have heard before, or even taught them to the whipper-snappers. They will catch me with a known joke in a different context or in an especially funny scenario. A few weeks back, Jared got me in church and I had to proceed with a “church laugh” until I could get over it. We were in Watoto church, and the guy in front of us “collapsed” during a prayer time. This was a little unnerving, and Jill was elbowing me to employ my doctor skills to check on the fellow. I did nothing, as his wife did not seem to be concerned, so I surmised it was part of his “prayer routine”? Jared got me laughing, because he said, “In the bible, it says to pray without seizing”!1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
16 Rejoice always; 17 Pray without ceasing; 18 in everything give thanks; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.
The more I think about this scenario, the more I think about how it is difficult to make jokes about prayer. Prayer is a serious subject and I am just starting to grasp a small fraction of its power. My prayer life has definitely broadened as we have been in Uganda. We have seen the power of prayer in many ways, but especially in what I would consider miraculous healing. There are frequent reminders of prayer while in Uganda. Several times per day, we would here a “call to prayer” that comes over the loud speaker from the local Mosque. Muslim businesses shut down, as life grinds to a halt for followers of allah, when it is time to pray. Devote muslims are known to develop bruises or callouses on their forehead from being on their knees with their head on the floor for so many hours in a day. These prayer “bumps” are called zebibahs.
This has started to bother me. Where is my zebibah? I have access to the living God with the power to change lives and save people, but I don’t have a zebibah. Our God tells us to pray without ceasing (or seizing), not just 5 times per day like Islam. Yet I don’t have so much as thickened skin on my knees. This is embarrassing!
I am ready to take my prayer life to another level. We have been praying that God would heal my father-in-law from his laryngeal cancer. Herb has been having some pain in his throat, and I have been praying that this pain is God resecting that cancer. Some members of our church prayed over Herb on Sunday calling on God to remove his cancer, not just help him through the surgery. I am going out on a limb by announcing to you that this is what I am praying. God is ultimately in control, and He may not take away the cancer, and Herb may have the surgery as planned, but I know that God can do it, and I am calling on Him to make His power seen through another miracle. I am going to ask Herb’s surgeon to take a look with a scope, to make sure that the tumor is still there, before beginning the surgery. We are believing that the surgery may not happen.
Please join me, as I attempt to deepen my prayer life. I don’t need an external lesion to prove that I am praying. This is a personal matter between me and my God. May my prayer life be reflected in my “walk” and not in my “wounds’.
Thank you for praying specifically for healing in Herb too.