I don’t know if you believe in prayer or not. I’m not trying to convince anyone, but…
Forty years ago this month in 1970, I walked into a doctor’s office for what I assumed would be a routine check-up. It ended up being a December and a Christmas I will never forget.
Two years previous, my thirty-five-year-old brother had died of cancer. Since that time, I had promised my wife and family I would have a checkup each year.
The following day, after my checkup, I was called out of class. At the time, I was teaching and coaching in Rockville, Indiana. My doctor called for me to come immediately to his office. “Larry, we found a spot on your lung. I have set up an appointment for you to see a doctor at Union Hospital, and you are to go there now.” Wow, I hadn’t even mentioned to my wife that I had gone for the checkup the day before.
As I sat down in the chair at the specialist’s office, his words, which I have never forgotten, were “There’s a spot on your lung about the size of a half dollar, and we need to go in there.” “How soon,” I asked. ” Soon, like this week.” Even though it was the week of Christmas, I underwent lung surgery. Obviously, we were quite anxious. I was just twenty eight years old, married with two small children, a four year old and one nine month old. All came out well and forty plus years later, I am still here and very blessed.
Now for the second half of my story, at that time, there was a person; we’ll call him Bill, who attended the church where my wife and I, along with my parents, attended. His wife shared this story with my family much later.
Bill was a farmer and often his wife took lunch to him in the field around noon. On this particular day, he was in a field bush hogging, mowing. As she walked from her car into the field where Bill was supposed to be, she didn’t see him at first. Then she saw him sitting on his tractor appearing to be “slumped over.” His head appeared bowed and, at first, she was alarmed, thinking something bad might have happened to him. Heart attack? She called his name and he looked up at her. Only later did Bill share with her what he had been doing. He told her he thought he knew about what time “that young man (me) was to go into surgery, and he had stopped to say a prayer for him.” That was what he was doing at the time she approached him with his lunch.
Probably if the truth be known, there are a lot of prayers others have said on our behalf. Hope the practice continues, and also we do likewise for others-stop and pray.
December 4, 2010