Another Reason to Pray

We have been praying for a dear member of our congregation because of her current state of illness. She is elderly, the oldest in our group; but that has not hindered her active participation with her church. She is legally blind; has to get within a few inches before she can recognize someone. But she still does her own basic housework, until this illness. She is nearly deaf, but works to pay attention so she can tell me what points she appreciates in my sermons.

She has these, as some would call them, disabilities of age, sight and hearing. But she always told me she had no problems, until now. Her gait was a little slower and she had to work around not seeing or hearing, but she felt she was healthy and she was definitely happy. But suddenly, an old back injury has flared up to make walking and even sitting up unbearable.

There are others, of course, who have dealt with illness and weakness for very long times: heart trouble, polio, diabetes, emphysema, etc. And I wonder who needs prayer the most. Is it the one that has been fighting illness for so long or the one who has known a long and blessed life until suddenly stricken?

Obviously they all need our prayers. But we should realize that there is a difference in the circumstances. The one situation has been going on for a long time and the person may be worn down to a spiritual stump. The other situation has come on after years of blessedness and the person may be suffering shock from the sudden change.

But do you know who really needs prayers? Those who do not realize that the life they have, with all of its goodness and opportunity, could be devastated in a moment. What will sustain them as they walk through the dark valley? What will guide them through the stormy night if they have not known the only one that can prepare us for life’s trials and life’s end?

If you have weakness or illness, find the Lord to help. If you have suffered a sudden loss of what seemed a perfect life, find the Lord to help. And if your life is all roses, find the Lord so he can teach you how to manage all these blessings. Then you will learn that, when the storm does hit, you can safely steer through.

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