Thursday, April 30, 2009

Prayers of the Saints

Last night, Willie, Becky, Ray, and I made our way into the small chapel in CAMC for a brief while yesterday evening, and while there, Willie discovered a series of notebooks. The notebooks (one of which is pictured above) contained prayers written out by people who had relatives in this hospital and in this particular wing. I took a few minutes this morning and read a few of these prayers. Some might think this an invasion of privacy, but I think each of these people who poured out their heart wanted to share their hearts not only with God Almighty, but with anyone who might wander into the chapel looking for a bit of encouragement.

I can't fully describe how beautiful and touching these words on the pages are. When you are going through any type of emergency care or trauma, it feels like the world is crashing in on you. It's the same with all of us. These prayers reflect that. Sure we all know statistics on various illnesses. If you've been reading this blog for a while, you know about the tragedy of over one billion people when it comes to clean drinking water. But when we are confronted with statistics, they might impress or depress us.

On the other hand, when we are confronted with prayers, the numbers become more personal. All of a sudden our lens gets a little less myopic. We realize that there are many who are hurting in our world, and there's a sense of solidarity because as they say in Kiswahili, "Tuko Pamoja", We Are Together. We are not alone. We are all connected and united. And yet these words in spiral notebook in a chapel point to an even deeper solidarity.

For me, when I read the prayers of others who are calling out to Jesus, it reminds me of a deeper truth. It reminds me that Jesus draws near to those who are hurting in the world. it reminds me that Jesus also suffered and understands everything we may be going through. It also reminds me of a vision from scripture in which the prayers of the saints are described as a fragrant incense to God.

When I read these prayers, they are a fragrant incense to me as well. I'm encouraged by them, humbled by them, and moved deeply in my soul by them.

I'm so thankful for the prayers of the saints. Spoken and unspoken. Written and unwritten. The heartfelt prayers of the saints are a thing of beauty.

Thanks again for all of the encouragement and prayers you have sent to the family over these last few days through phone calls, visits, tweets, and facebook. These have been a strong source of encouragement for me and my family.

1 comment:

Willie said...

What a wonderful posting my friend.