Gratitude Day 447
Wed., Apr. 29, 2020
Psalm 18:6: I was in terrible trouble when I called out to you, but from your temple you heard me and answered my prayer.
While we can have a variety of tools in our spiritual toolboxes, one tool that for me is non-negotiable is prayer.
While we often think of prayer as a formal pouring out of our desires and needs to God, I think it is much, much more than this.
First, prayer is not so God can hear our requests. God already knows them before we utter them. No, prayer is more for us than for God. Prayer is our way to recognizing that there are just some things of this world that are way bigger than us and our ability to create effective change. Prayer provides a means for us to pour out our guts to God … and enlist God’s help.
Yes, prayer should be more than this. It should be praising God as well as recognizing where we fail to shine for God’s kingdom. Too often, prayer becomes a laundry list of what WE want God to do … and enlisting God to do it NOW!
And when this happens, it truly IS a beautiful thing.
Monday was one of those times when prayer was answered, and a little boy named Calvin received a new liver.
The story begins a few weeks ago when Calvin’s mother, Sarah, saw signs that something wasn’t quite right with her newborn son. Sarah called Calvin’s doctor but because of COVID-19, there was hesitation about bringing Calvin in right away. A couple weeks later, Calvin had his two-month check-up in person with his doctor where his unusual symptoms were explored. Calvin was immediately sent to the Children’s Hospital for more testing where it was determined that his liver was not working properly. On April 21, Calvin went on a transplant list.
While the transplant doctors preferred a pediatric liver, they were also aware that this might not be possible. After a couple days of a private search, Calvin’s parents were encouraged to begin a widespread public search for a living donor. In just a couple of days, the request was shared thousands of times and 200 people began the application process. This was incredible because of the extremely specific requirements for a donor.
On Mon., Apr. 27, Calvin received a liver transplant. The liver became available because another family said good-bye to their child and made a liver from their child available for donation. Yesterday, Tues., Apr. 28, became the two weeks mark that Calvin had been in the hospital. It truly is amazing that his condition was diagnosed, he was put on the transplant list AND he received a transplant all within two-weeks. Maybe even more significant is that the transplanted liver is already working in little Calvin’s body.
Talk about answered prayer. I’m confident little Calvin was on hundreds of prayer chains and thousands of individual prayer lists. Not only Calvin, but also his parents, the doctors and healthcare providers.
Calvin’s situation could be labeled a variety of things: a miracle, an answered prayer. It is both of these things and more. Some might say he was “lucky.” Yet, it’s impossible to thank God for Calvin’s liver, knowing that another family is facing a completely different outcome for their child.
Why do some prayers seemingly “get” answered and others don’t? Is it because someone didn’t pray hard enough or long enough or wasn’t sincere in their prayer? Absolutely not! It is because someone made a deal with God and now, they have to uphold their end of the deal? I honestly don’t think this is how God works.
What I do believe is that there is great comfort for this family in knowing their little guy received a liver this week and his body seems to be accepting it. Would of this happened without the prayers of thousands and the sharing of his need for a heart on social media? It’s not my place to answer this.
It is my prayer that we see prayer as a necessary and vital tool in our spiritual toolboxes. Doing so will not guarantee that every prayer request we make will get answered. It just doesn’t work this way. Having prayer as a main tool in your tool chest is a reminder that no matter how smart, skilled, articulate, nice, or outspoken you are, prayer isn’t about what we ask of God. It’s how we allow ourselves to be changed and modified through the process of prayer.
Calvin has a long way to go. His parents are very much aware of this. But for today, he’s doing oh, so good. Did the prayers of many make a difference in Calvin getting a liver this week? It’s not my place to say. What I do believe is that WE can be changed through the ritual and commitment to prayer.
This, my friends, is what I pray has also happened to hundreds and thousands of us this week.
So often, I hear people say, “I’ll pray. It’s the least I can do.”
Honestly, I’m thinking prayer is THE MOST important thing we can do, not for God’s benefit but for our own. Amen.
For Calvin’s new liver, I am grateful.
PLEASE JOIN IN … It’s Devos with Dianne at 8 PM tonight on Facebook Live!
Holy God – Thanks you for coming into Calvin’s little life. We pray for the family who lost a loved one and yet made the liver available to Calvin. We lift up their disappointment as well. May you provide Calvin’s health care providers the absolute best knowledge and information to help Calvin make it through these next days. We lift up Calvin’s parents and family as well. May you provide all with comfort. Amen.
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