This weekend I played at church. It wasn’t my scheduled week to play, but I was filling in for another one of the keyboard players. Normally this makes me happy. I love making music and I especially love it when I get to do it at church, helping lead others into a place of worship and thanksgiving. So filling in for another player is usually a joy.
But not this week.
I had to fill in this week because my friend Jenn is sick. Really sick. Cancer has come back to her a third time, and this time it looks aggressive. My heart hurts for her and for her husband.
The weekend was not made easier when I was surrounded by people saying that they truly have faith that God is going to heal her. That she is going to be a testimony of God’s greatness.
Because the truth is, I didn’t believe it.
I’ve believed it in the past. When little 11 year old Logan had an inoperable brain tumor, I believed that God would not let him die. When my friend Mel’s husband was diagnosed with esophageal cancer, I believed that God would spare him. And yet God healed neither of these people. They died entirely too young, leaving behind people who should not have to deal with that loss.
When people told me they believed, I just wanted to scream, “How?”
Instead I just nodded. And I screamed it in my head instead.
|Jenn & Andy|
I wanted to believe so much. But I’ve seen the pain of unanswered prayers and it hurts so much. How do you say that God is loving when you watch someone bury their son? How do you trust that God wants what is best for us when you see a young wife go through the agony of watching her husband die painfully?
How do you have faith in the face of the overwhelming evidence that this woman’s life will likely be cut short by the sickness that refuses to leave?
I played and as I did, I prayed.
I prayed for Jenn, but I also prayed selfishly for myself. That God would somehow increase my faith so I could believe that the healing I was praying for her might be something that could happen.
After the service, we gathered with Jenn and Andy in the green room to pray with them and for them before they traveled out of state to speak with additional doctors.
We circled around them, some holding hands, some laying hands on them, some simply standing nearby, all praying. All crying out for God to show mercy on this couple.
And in that room, where our sweat and tears and snot mixed with our words, I found that my prayers weren’t just prayed out of an obligation, but that my tiny, anemic, weak faith mixed with that of my friends and it grew. I believed, I do believe, that she can be healed.
I believe this because my faith experienced healing.
Have you experienced a moment when your faith grew? What are ways that your faith is strengthened? If you pray, could you please pray for my friend Jenn?