So, how do you pray when bad stuff happens? It seems like I am barraged by pain at every turn.
In the last two weeks I’ve received heartbreaking news; two young men’s lives were unexpectedly cut short and another friend’s boy has been diagnosed with a serious illness before much of his life has really even begun…all while another dear friend fights an ongoing battle with cancer. Then, I find out that a famous sports figure and his daughter also died in a helicopter accident.
Some of them I know personally, while others I’ve never met. Still, they are all deeply loved by somebody…and God knows them all by name. As a mother I grieve for their mamas. I can’t help but put myself in their shoes because I know they loved their boys fiercely.
Oh God…help these mamas!
What do we do when bad stuff happens? If you are like me, then your first thought is…”God, please don’t ever let that happen to someone in my family…to my kids.” I think we can all agree that no one ever wishes to feel that kind of pain and loss. But then, there’s got to be more to life than just me and those in my small sphere.
Although I can’t personally relate to their pain on an experiential level, I CAN pray through the emotions of my worst fears.
Admittedly, all mamas have struggled through the fear of what-ifs when our kids don’t answer our calls or come home a little later than expected. Our minds have run through a host of worst-case scenarios while waiting for a text or the sound of the front door opening.
It’s these emotions that fuel my prayers when I hear of someone else’s loss and pain.
I often see pleas for prayer as I scroll through my social media feeds and I typically see the same replies…praying or the praying hands emoji. And, I think that most people mean it when they type those words. The question is…do we actually pray or do we forget all about prayer after scrolling through the cute pictures of babies and puppies?
Our pity doesn’t move God’s hand, but our prayers do!
In recent months, I’ve developed a new habit of praying immediately when I see someone in need. If I type that I’m praying, then that’s exactly what I’m doing…right then and right there.
I park that cursor and I cry out to God on their behalf. Sometimes I’ve felt the pain they are experiencing and other times I can only imagine it. Either way, I join my heart with theirs for just a moment…it’s then that two or three hearts are gathered in His name.
Because, I can be sure the person who posted their request hasn’t forgotten about it. I know it’s an issue that a cute picture just won’t distract them from when they are in the thick of it.
20 For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.”
What do I pray when bad stuff happens? I pray for God to move and I pray for the Holy Spirit to hold them close. I pray for God to speak the words and do the things I can’t do.
Prayer is a vital weapon in our arsenal, but it doesn’t do us much good if we don’t wield it on a regular basis. Daily use makes us stronger and it bestows strength upon those for whom we pray.
UPDATE: I just received word this morning that the young boy’s test came back negative for Leukemia!! God answers prayers.